ENG506 QUIZE NO 1. FALL 2019

ENG506 QUIZE NO 1. FALL 2019



English as a Global Language
Topic-001: Introduction to the Course Learning Theories
The course gives an engaging overview of the development and concept of World Englishes. The course discusses the role of English as a single global language all over the world and its advantages for the world as well as the dangers for the minor languages. The course also describes various political, social and historical contexts which led to the spread of English throughout the world and eventually caused it to become a lingua franca.
The course aims to:
·         understand globalization, global language and the need of a global language 
·         comprehend the relation between language and identity and the dominance of a global language over minor languages.       
·         have a conceptual understanding of English as native, second, foreign and international language and the factors affecting them.      
Topic-001: Globalization

World Englishes is a term coined by Braj Kachru (an Indian-American linguist) initially to refer to the institutionalized varieties of English. Now the term refers to various varieties of English across the world. The pluralization of World English in the title refers to the large number of varieties that English is accrued as a result of its contact with sociolinguistic context. It means that English is no longer used by native English speakers in native English speaking countries like America, Australia, New Zealand, etc. Now English is also used by non-native English speakers in non-native English speaking countries for various professional, official and educational purposes. These countries include Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, etc. These distinct varieties are grouped together under the heading of World Englishes.

Globalization refers to a great number of things taking place in the world and their interconnectedness. It is a process of interaction and integration among people, companies, and governments of different nations. This interaction can take various forms, e.g. political cooperation among countries with the hope that this kind of co-operation will help prevent disputes or in case of a dispute will help resolve such disputes. Some examples are SAARC, European Union and NATO. Another form that this interaction can take is through sharing of ideas and information. In today’s world sharing of information takes place through social media and internet. This can also take place with the help of TV programs, films and books.
Trade and exchange of resources greatly enhances this interaction. Countries like America sell their finished products and technologies to countries which lack them. Similarly, developing countries sell their natural resources to the developed countries which need them.
Globalization is not a new phenomenon. For thousands of years countries and later corporation have been selling and buying things from far off lands. Similarly, for centuries, countries have been investing in enterprises in foreign countries. It increased as result of technological development. Globalization has also led to cultural exchange among different countries and this cultural exchange may lead to harmonization of world cultures with the result that one day all the people of the world maybe eating the same food, listening to the same music and speaking the same language.

Topic-002: What is a Global Language?
A language achieves a global status when it develops a special role recognized in every country. Now the question arises what determines a special role? If the mother tongue status of a language makes it global then Spanish should be the global language as it is the mother tongue of over 20 countries around the world. If the speakers’ number determines it then English is spoken by millions of people around the world.
However, it is neither the mother tongue status nor the number of speakers which determine the global status of a language. It is, in fact, identities of the speakers which determine the global status of a language.
Millions of people around the world speak English as a first language. Even a great number of speakers speak it as their second language. Today, total 1.5 billion speakers of English exist around the world. No other language can match this degree of growth and development.
A global language essentially refers to a language that is learned and spoken internationally, and is characterized not only by the number of its native and second language speakers, but also by its geographical distribution, and its use in international organizations and in diplomatic relations.
A global language is a language taken up by people in countries in which it is not the mother tongue. It can be done in two ways:
·         By making it the official language of the country (second language)
·         By making it a priority in foreign-language teaching e.g. Russian is popular in former Soviet Union countries

Topic-003: The Need for a Global Language

There is an urgent need for global language but this need is not new. Linguistically mixed communities have been communicating with each other for thousands of years. Communication in the past was through translators and interpreters. Monarchs, kings and ambassadors met with each other in the presence of interpreters. However, this kind of communication has its own problems. It was restricted and incomplete information because intensity and mildness of feelings cannot be communicated through translation. Having a common language (lingua franca) is the solution to this problem. Lingua franca can be defined in the follow words:
A lingua franca is a language that is adopted as a common language between speakers whose native languages are different.

Choice of a language as the lingua franca
·         A simplified language used by different trading communities (Pidgin)
·         An indigenous language can be adopted as a lingua franca, e.g. Mandarin Chinese
·         A foreign language of a powerful nation becomes lingua franca, e.g. English

The extent of the use of a lingua franca depends on these factors.
·         Between a few ethnic groups in one part of a single country, e.g. Urdu can be a lingua franca in Lahore if people from four provinces get together.
·         Between the trading populations of just a few countries instead of the whole world
·         Between the countries in a particular part of the world, e.g. Mandarin Chinese as a lingua franca in East Asian countries (China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South and North Korea)

Global lingua franca is comparatively a newer idea. It emerged in the twentieth century (in particular since 1950s after World War II). There are two separate factors which are responsible for the growth in contacts among countries:
·         Increased Interaction among countries at international forums. After 2nd world war, several international organizations such as United Nations Organization (UNO), World Bank, World Health Organization (WHO), The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), were developed to bring countries closer and to resolve their disputes.
·         Increased contacts among countries because of technological developments, especially advancement in communication technology and technology for transportation.
·         Need for a common language at international forums
UN has a membership of 190 countries at the moment. It started with five official languages but there was a need to reduce the number of official languages in order to save the cost of translation and interpretation. However, language choice is a sensitive issue as no country would like the official status of its language to be changed or lowered at international levels. The solution is the voluntary use of a common language as a working language. English has proved to be such a language due to the increase of general competence in it or its popularity to be learnt as a foreign language.

Another need for a global language is on business and academic front. Collaboration among scientists and scholars from different countries is possible only through a lingua franca, e.g. a scientist from Sweden and a scientist from India want to work together on a research project, they will not be able to do so without using a common language. Similarly, a common language provides a lot of facilitation in international business. A businessman from Japan and a businessman from America cannot work together on a business project unless they use a common language.
Topic-004: What Makes a Global Language?

Here are few misunderstandings about the success of a language.
·         Perceived aesthetic qualities
·         Clarity of expression
·         Literary power
·         Religious influence
·         Simple structure and grammar

In the following, some misunderstandings about the popularity of English have been provided.
·         Ease of learning
·         Few inflectional endings,
·         a word changes form in the end, e.g., adopt, adopted (V), word, words (Noun)
·         Gender neutral
·         English makes no distinction of gender in the use of nouns, verbs and adjectives.
·         Appealing properties of a language
·         Familiar vocabulary because thousands of words are borrowed from various languages.
·         Democratic nature of the language (English grammar does not distinguish between social classes)
·         Cosmopolitan (multicultural) character because of a large number of borrowed words

A language does not become a global language because of its:
·         Structural properties
·         Vocabulary      
·         Association with great literature, culture or religion
·         A strong power base
·         Political power and military power
·         Economic power
·         Technological power
·         Cultural power
·         Economic Power

Now-a-days, along with politics and military power, economics is also the chief driving force behind the world events. If the military power establishes a language in a region, it is the economic power which spreads and maintains it.

Topic-005: Emergence of English as a Global Language
Communication technologies expanded the scope of economic developments leading to:
     Formation of countless multinational organisations
     Rapid increase in international marketing and advertising
     Empowerment first of press and then of broadcast media

Economic empowerment and communication technologies
Growth of new mass entertainment industry in the form of movies and music, e.g. availability of movies on computer screens, USB drives, discs, etc.
     Desire for progress in science and technology has resulted in the development of an international intellectual and research environment. 
     Economic supremacy of English speaking countries
     Countries at the centre of this plethora of activities were USA and Great Britain.
     Economic supremacy of English speaking countries
     The world’s leading industrial and trading country by the beginning of the 19th century
     Biggest colonial power
     Economic supremacy of English speaking countries
     Fastest growing population in whole of the Western Europe (100 million by the end of the 19th century)
     Fastest growing and most productive economy in the world
     Power of English established by British colonial power was maintained by America, making English a truly global language.
Topic-006: Change in the Status of English

The following question arises in the minds of the people about the global status of English:
Is the reversal of status of English possible? The answer is yes it is possible.
Possibility of change in the status of English
      A change in the existing balance of power
      An alternative method of communication
Change in the balance of power
      Political power
      Economic influence
Change in the balance of power
A large scale change in the current balance of power may lead to a change in the status of English. A small change cannot reverse the status of English as the popularity and use of English has spread to countess nations; therefore, its ownership belongs to many nations.
An alternative method of communication
      Using machine translations
      Making it possible to communicate in the first language
An alternative method of communication
      Global spread and economic accessibility of such a method
      Doesn’t pose a threat to the need of a global language

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