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What do you think about the position of English as a world language?
If you want to add your own opinion to this talking point, there is a comment form at the bottom of the page where you can do so.
There is no denying the fact that the English language is the global langugage spoken by a great deal more people the the native speakers of the language. Your being a native or non-native speaker doesn't matter much anymore. This language is used for communication, not for flaunting your accent. As long as someone can speak passable English, it is fine. Native speakers mustn't look down on those who speak their language sometimes errorously.
I think that English language can be put at the first place in world. I think that most people prefer to learn it as second language. Many sciences are written in English. And so there are thousands of cite which written in English. It is my second language after Arabic. And I find it very interesting and I adore the English literature. I think that Shakespeare is an important reason of its spread all over the world.
I am a half British half French English teacher who lives in Paris. I love the English language and its literature and am fully conscious of its importance in the world. What really annoys me though is the way in which people assume you speak English, regardless of where you are or what language you are speaking at that instant.
I mean for example all the tourists who walk up to you and ask in English where the Louvre or Notre Dame is. It is rude to assume that the other person speaks English without even bothering to ask them if they do. I tend to answer that I do not speak English ( which implies that I WON'T speak the language to someone who can't even be bothered to learn how to say hello in French)...
Far more annoying is the way in which waiters and museum employees assume that if you are not French you are too thick to know the language: my boyfriend is Spanish and we speak Spanish when we are together. Every single time, the waiters will address us in English! It is extremely rude!
In conclusion, I just wanted to say that it is true that English is an important language, that 1/7th of the world's population does speak it however it is important to remember that other languages do exist and even if it helps to speak English, it is not compulsory and people should not assume it is the only language there is.
The idea of English as a world language is very good. As in my country; Malaysia, the education system in now slighty change to use English in critical subject which are mathematics and science including physic, chemistry and biology. So, I think that the idea can be achieved and nothing impossible untill we try it. We have to make an effort towards it.
On the topic of English as a world language, I do not agree that by measure of convenience, imperialism, or otherwise that English should be relegated to status of "the" world's language. If such were to be so, then soon enough, there would be even more dialects of English than exist now. Language depicts one's culture, and in a perfect world, we'd make an effort to steep ourselves in as many as possible..including effective strategies for hearing impaired and brain-injured individuals. They need language too.
I think that English is nowadays the dominant language in the world, and has been improving during all the 20th century. But I'm not sure that this language will continue to keep its rank, for few reasons:
In a perfect world, it would be marvellous to have the choice as to what the future international language would be, but unfortunately for both us English teachers and language planners all over the world, things are not that simple.
First of all, I would like to say that English is a beautiful language and I like it very much.