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English As A Neutral Language Tool

2406 words - 10 pages

English as a neutral tool
My earlier paper highlights how English is acting as a killer language for native languages. As globalisation has created a global village, the people of different languages need a lingua franca to communicate with one another. At present, English is a true lingua franca and a global language. Crystal opines “a language achieves a genuinely global status when it develops a special role that is recognised in every country.” (Crystal 3) English is spoken in different parts of the world as first, second or foreign language. Crystal calculates that nearly 85% of international organizations and 99% of European organizations are using English as official language. Crystal discovers link between language dominance and economic, technological and cultural power. Language with strong power base propagates as international language. He opines a language achieves its role as international language due to its political and military power. This is very true in case of English. During Roman Empire, Latin was used as an international language. In nineteenth century, English language grows with the growth of Britain. Britain became world power and its imperial policies led to the spread of English around the globe. No doubt, colonialism led to the global use of English. It grows rapidly by coming in touch with local languages, which makes English a hybrid language changing and growing to meet communicative needs. In nineteenth century, it becomes a global language, “a language on which the sun never sets.” (Graddol, future 6) Graddol estimates that approximately 1.5 billion people in the world are using English as a first or second language. It becomes the international currency of science and technology. It occupies a dominant place among world languages. In this paper, I am discussing how English is used as a neutral and practical tool to access the world knowledge. This language has assisted people to adapt to worldly changes in this globalized world. No doubt, spread of English led to cultural and historical dominance but we should not forget that that due to this English language, the colonized were given access to the global knowledge. English has played significant role in the internationalisation of culture as people are no longer bound to their native cultures. It allowed them to interact with different cultures in the world. This shows that English is a tool for intercultural communication. Due to this, UNESCO labelled English as a lingua franca means ‘a language which is used habitually by people whose mother tongues are different in order to facilitate communication between them.’ It eliminates linguistic gaps among the people of different regions. People of the different parts of the world are linguistically equal. It helps people to communicate more widely and with people of diverse culture and international community. Pennycook agrees with Phillipson and points that English is the language of international capitalism....

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