Essay on English As A Lingua Franca

Essay on English As A Lingua Franca

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As English continues to grow as an international language, cultural concerns surrounding the standardization of the language also grow. Language is an independent vein of communication that varies from country to country. Argentina and Cuba both name Spanish as a national language, but speech patterns and connotations of words will vary between those countries, and even within the regions of those countries. Certain aspects of an environment such as family life, socioeconomic status, gender, education level, geography, and the influence of pop culture and the media will contribute to these colloquialisms. In an effort to bridge the gaps caused by variations in speech, some linguists have suggested instituting English as a lingua franca, which is a common language of choice among speakers who come from different linguacultural backgrounds, or a medium through which two linguistically variant parties can communicate. English as a lingua franca would help to bridge the gaps that exist in the social hierarchy, and promote the norm of multilingualism, fostering a broader understanding amongst different cultures.
A concern that arises with the national standardization of english is linguistic imperialism, a term coined by Robert Phillipson saying that the dominance of English threatens the existence of other, less prevalent languages. and maintains the inequality that exists between languages (Dombi, 2011). With the United States spearheading modernization and globalization, the possibility of linguistic imperialism becomes more clear and more likely for the prominent powers on the world stage. Seeing that the most powerful nations have some integration of English for the sake of international communication, aboriginal languages may ...


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... faces] circles. [explain inner middle and outer circle english speakers]. For example, in Japan there are mostly outer circle english speakers because there is not a high concentration of inner circle and middle circle speakers. This means that their command of english is further from native command because they are not in close proximity to inner and middle circle speakers.
Furthermore, instituting ELF will help to facilitate a broader cultural understanding and limit the number of miscommunications in economic transactions. With every party following the same standards, there will be less words lost in translation, therefore, less miscommunication. Having English as a lingua franca does not exclude those who speak English as a first language. In ELF communications, however, the native speakers would not be the ones “setting the linguistic agenda” (Jenkins, 2009).

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