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The spread of English and the rise of new Englishes - Essay Example

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It is estimated that there are over 300 million native speakers and over 300 million users of English as a second language. Apart from this there are a further 100 million users, who use it as a foreign language. So what attracts so many people to this language A very popular language the world over, English is the most common medium of communication in the world of business, and commerce…
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The spread of English and the rise of new Englishes
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Download file to see previous pages While on the study of English, introspection on how English came into being can be elucidated here. The following figure throws light on the various cultures and sects that contributed to the development of English as we see today.
The history of English is divided into three periods since its existence way back some 1000 BCE. Though it is difficult to establish the correct year, researchers have unanimously concluded that the three periods are referred to as Old English (or Anglo-Saxon), Middle English, and Modern English. The graph above shows that the earliest period is marked with the migration of certain Germanic tribes from the continent to Britain in the fifth century A.D., though no records of their language survive from before the seventh century, and continued till the end of the eleventh century or a bit later. Before the end of the eleventh century, Britain was also being influenced by Latin. Old Norse (the language of the Viking invaders), and Anglo-Norman French of the dominant class after the Norman Conquest in 1066, had a substantial impact on the lexicon, and the well-developed inflectional system that typified that the grammar of Old English had begun to break down (Merriam-Webster, 2007)2.
We have see
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We have seen that English is now a popular language spoken by natives of almost all nations around the globe. But, does English actually qualify to be the global language A headline in 'Globe and Mail' published in Toronto in 1997 read, "English is the global language". Though not much of ado, headlines of similar nature have appeared in thousands of newspapers and magazines across the globe in recent years. 'English Rules', a headline with a difference, showcases the popularity and strength of English in a world of uncanny universality of the language's spread and continuation.
So what does it mean to say that a language is a global language Or why is English the language, usually cited in this connection If English did become the global language, will it remain omnipresent These and more questions lead researchers to question the theory, whether; English is in fact the first language of the world If English is one's mother tongue, one may have mixed feelings about the way English is spreading around the world. On the one hand, there is cause for pride, that English language has become ever so successful, but on the other, there could be consternation that the same language that was inherent as English, is being influenced by others, who borrow words from languages other than English to suit themselves (David Crystal, 2003, English as a Global Language)3.
A lot of countries have their own native language or 'mother tongue', as it is popularly referred to as. If this is the case, which is true, how does English qualify to be declared the official global language There are two possibilities; one, English ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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