It is a fact that Britain has been a country that had colonized many parts of the world, and the inhabitants of the present USA were actually British. These factors led to English becoming the global language that it is, today.
Language is an invention, quite possibly the most dynamic of things created by humankind because it encompasses all. Feeling a certain feeling, and then having the privilege of expressing it is something we all take for granted, but shouldn’t because it is the one thing every person that has ever lived has contributed to. Be it by adding new words into the language, passing it down generations, or simply by conversing and keeping the language alive.
Today’s world is one where there are no borders, anything and everything is accessible to those who want it. Such times call for a unifying method communication, and for better or for worse, English has emerged as that binding force. It is one language that is almost universally accepted and is spoken more than any other language in the world. A person from India and a person from Japan don’t have to learn both the languages (and that of any other area the other person is from) rather, everyone speaks English.
However, in recent times, English has unwittingly become a symbol of how ‘educated’ or ‘learned’ a person is. People tend to not pay heed to what a person is saying if it’s in a local dialect.
In institutional spaces, too, people tend to listen to just about anything, provided it is accompanied by good oratory skills and, of course, English. There is a sort of separation between those who are familiar with the language and those who are not.
As a result, many people who may know the science of things, get discouraged and their genius remains undiscovered. They will refrain from raising up their hands and talking about issues that concern them due to this unsaid barrier.
When English gives us a common identity, it can also rob us of our basic one. Due to the glamorization of English, we are not getting familiar with our respective dialects and feel a sense of shame in using it to converse.
What can be done in the world which has turned into a ‘global village’ is that we may embrace English, but also not forget to water our heritage and never to undermine those who don’t speak it.
Feature Image Credits: Plato-Edu