“I’m drawing a blank”. Sounds familiar, does it not? The beauty of language lies in its expression. The purpose of language is to facilitate communication. Any language failing to do so is rendered redundant, leading to perpetual extinction. Magnifying the concept of expression, is strongly influenced by culture. Culture defines language and expression, shaping its identity. Cultural heritage is propagated in distinct languages, which when translated, largely loses its integrity. Here lies the problem with English being the dominant language. The presence of a dominant language brings about linguistic bankruptcy, hindering expression yet again.
Colonization propagated the spread of the English language across the globe, making it the most widely used language today.
Although it has unified people across cultures, it has also cost us our own. A global citizen today is more likely than not very well versed with English as opposed to being proficient with any native language, even his own. In view of becoming global citizens, people have moved away from their culture and language. Having just one dominant language leads to the loss of cultural diversity, making the world just a tad bit less engaging. Having a dominant language threatens the social and cultural identities of those who cannot speak English. They often feel threatened in an organization where English is the primary language. This transcends into society as well.
The English language has revolutionized the field of sciences, enabling scientists to collaborate and share their work. However, this presents its set of challenges. Since English is the most widely used language, all work in the field of science and technology is expected to be presented only in English, limiting the scope of understanding of those who do not know the language.
Along the same lines, education is now primarily imparted in English, making it harder for children whose primary language is not English, to learn or even attend school. This also leads to the disappearance of their native language as they are no longer taught in schools.
The global job market operates solely in English, discarding any applicant who is unable to converse fluently in English. Turning down an applicant based on merely a language barrier could cost global development as it does not consider the competencies of the applicant, however beneficial to the company.
In conclusion, although having a universal language has distinct benefits, it must not be at the cost of a culture or global development.