jueves, 25 de agosto de 2011
Please read the joke below and give your views on it considering the Chinglish, Spanish, Globish and other variations as well as linguistic imperialism.
An American visiting England walked into a hotel lobby. "The lift will be down presently", the receptionist told him.
"The lift?" said the American. "Oh, you mean the elevator."
"No, I mean the lift." replied the Englishman.
"I think I should know what it is called",. said the American. "Elevators were invented in the States."
"Perhaps" retorted the Englishman. "But we invented the language."
Languages are living entities that may develop, merge with other languages and even die, as is the case of Latin. In the past, this was not very often, in other words, a language could merge with another if one nation tried to conquer another and in more recent cases when different nations trade their goods among them. That was the case of English, when the British conquered north America. Then, after a series of different problems, America became independant and kept something from the former conqueror, the language.
Nowadays, thanks to the advances in communication, specially the internet, the spread of English through the net has even threatened the existance of other languages around the world. As English leads its way through different and exotic cultures –if we take Britain as the cot of the English language- that it has started to merge with other native languages like Spanish, Chinese, French, and other languages, making up new variations of the cited language.
What is the role America plays in this ‘spreading of the English language’ if the cot of the language is Britain? As America has spectacularly developed itself as one of the most important countries of the world, she has ‘printed’ every new item she produces and every new discovery she makes, with the English language. So, she has helped in the spreading of the language throughout the world, which is also known as the English imperialism. This can be clearly seen in the Internet where the English language appears in 74% of the websites, leaving just a tiny percentage to other languages. It can also be seen in the many foreign products that we consume, even though they are produced in a non-English speaking country, they are written in English because it has become the language of the international trade or because of the presence of multinational companies as well. The imperialism is not only concerned with the economical dominance one country can have upon others, but it is also concerned with its language. The language is, perhaps the first thing that is exposed to the market, and with this, to the world.
Because of the cited spreading of the English language, many countries have developed their own view and ways of using English as a lingua franca. This fact is no less important, because by this moment, there are perhaps fewer English native speakers than non-natives speakers, which is threatening the future of the English language. There are some other people who considering the circumstances, take advantage of them, and try to ‘sell’ their products, as is the case of Globish, which according to the person who coined the term, Paul Nerrier, it is a simplified version of English to help enterpreneurs do business. In other words, it is the language of Globalization.
To conclude, it can be said that this new world full of communication and trade may lead us to obtain and speak a globalized language which might differ from any previous ancestor and ending up in an unrecognized variety of English or any other language.
Publicado por Profesora Beatriz Crosa en 13:23