We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

English as a Global Language

The whole doc is available only for registered users

A limited time offer! Get a custom sample essay written according to your requirements urgent 3h delivery guaranteed

Order Now

The aim of this essay is to explore the positions of Cristal, Phillipson and Reid and to consider how to address and how not to address the global language situation. There have been many different opinions expressed by academic linguistics as to weather the spread of one dominant language is an advantage or a disadvantage. Thus, this paper will present some of the main positive and negative aspects of English as a global language.

The term global language introduced in 1997 by David Crystal, a British linguist, in his book entitled English as a global language. It is the language used by the globalizing world. For centuries in Western culture the role of Latin met, when he was a dead language, which no one spoke, but which still taught in schools at the age of twenty-grit. So it was a common language (lingua franca) for scientists from different countries and the Western Christianity.

Firstly, because everyone is able to learn one foreign language and English is available in most influential mass media, it may contact people to get comfortable with the whole world. In other words, anyone can become a citizen of the world. Until recently, the citizens of the world were the only people who know several languages. They were often lucky to wealthy families, brought up by foreign governess.

According to Cristal’s view for those who do not speak English will be, in almost every case, empowered by learning English. Furthermore, Crystal postulates that the explosive growth of non-native English speakers has resulted in a world English, which is being shaped and directed just as much by these non-native English speakers as by mother-tongue English speakers. Crystal emphasizes a new world view, based on global interdependence, which “sees English playing a central role in empowering the subjugated and marginalized, and eroding the division between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’.”

His view was to introduce the positive example of the English as a global language and its role in regards to international safety. A common language could led people travel around the world and communicate in one tongue. Today work of people whose profession requires solid foreign relations, it is now much easier. A good example is, of course, academics. A few decades ago, need to know, at least passively, not only English, but also German and French. Furthermore, in some disciplines was necessary also Russian. In these languages ​​were published work and papers spewed. Currently, except for specific situations, researchers need to know only English.

The relationships and influence on each other different languages, often adjacent to each other. This effect manifests itself in general in such a manner that they utilize each other’s vocabulary.

According to Cristal (2000) people for whom English is first language have the advantage of it; others however have to learn it as a foreign language, which is relatively easy only in childhood.

English often call it the continental. Example, if you meet a Pole, a Frenchman and an Englishman, a Frenchman, a Pole, and usually speak English simplified, and the Englishman is trying to adapt to them in order to be understood. Among other things, try not to use idioms. Another example is the scientific publications, which are usually written in simplified English.

Phillipson (2001) however, states that translation problems from other languages into English cause serious problems for people doing business. For example, a recent doctoral study in international law in the United States concluded that the French language protection measures are in conflict with the principle of a common market with the free movement of goods, services, labor, and capital. Such conflict, it is believed, could soon lead corporate lawyers to challenge national language legislation and demand an English-only market throughout the EU.

Another aspect he mentioned explained the fact that linguistic imperialism works in a similar way to the religious proselytization of the colonial era. Here dominated groups are not physically attacked (as is the case in racism). It is their languages and cultures that are denigrated. As dominated groups are subtly conditioned into seeing their language and culture as inferior, they slowly, but surely, lose their affection for their culture and language.

By saying that he refers to the groups who meet this kind of control and tend to suffer more than dominated groups from the ear of colonialism. He also defines English linguistic imperialism as the process by which “the dominance of English is asserted and maintained by the establishment and continuous reconstitution of structural and cultural inequalities between English and other languages.”

Jessica Reid talked about Standard English; she questioned what it is nowadays and due changing world the concept of SE change with it. According to her research there is a question if current state of Standard English exist. Reid refers to Trudgill who rather than stating what he thinks SE to be, offers readers a discussion regarding what SE is not, aiming to build a “characterization” rather than a definition. From a linguistic position, Trudgill begins by offering his own definition of standardization, “as consisting of the processes of language determination, codification and stabilization.”

To understand that, author discuss these three concepts in further detail, and describes language determination as decisions which have to be taken concerning the selection of particular languages or varieties of language for particular purposes in the society or nation in question”; codification as “the process whereby a language variety ‘acquires a publicly recognized and fixed form’” which “are usually enshrined in dictionaries and grammar books”;

She summed up that today’s language education and language policy have become subjects of wide debate in many countries, however as world moves toward globalization, dialogue must continue in beneficial tool and has the potential to be.

After this debate there is the best place to give the comment. All of the above authors included in this essay are gifted and have a lot to contribute to the discussion about the Word of English as well as the ideas of the future of English.

English is the language of communication between people in the world, and are the native languages ​​of national identity. Thus, English and their native language should be harmoniously complement each other. Defense of the interests of mother tongues is sometimes justified, but should be well-balanced.

According to British Council, Graddol (2006) wrote a 130-page report in which he stated that everyone speaks English, 148 companies will naturally look for employees who also speak other major languages ​​such as Mandarin Chinese or Spanish. There is a need to take radical action and plan for the future, otherwise people in the UK will be in a constant disadvantage.

To conclude, it seems that there are more positive aspects then negative of English as a global language. From the discussion it can be seen that people around the world are in need to of a one global language in order to communicate effectively and achieve common goals. In my opinion English may be replaced by other language but to that time there will be a number of people who will be able to communicate in English.


• Chorpita Douglas The Problem of World English: Avaliable at http://chorpita.com/uni/chorpita_douglas_world_english last accessed 01 December 2012

• Bada Erdoğan, English as a World Language in Academic Writing http://www.readingmatrix.com/articles/sept_2010/bilal_genc.pdf

• Graddol, D. (2006). English next. Retrieved December 12, 2006, from www.britishcouncil.org/files/documents/learning-research-english-next.pdf

• Crystal, D. (1997). The language that took over the world. Retrieved December 15, 2006, from http://www.davidcrystal.com/DC_articles/English39.pdf

• Reid L. Jessica Questioning a world standard English available at http://www.ijls.net/volumes/volume6issue1/Jessica1.pdf

• Phillipson, Robert. 2000a. Linguistic Imperialism. 5th http://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=BGw8bsbRJtYC&oi=fnd&pg=PA333&dq=Phillipson,+Robert.+2000a.+Linguistic+Imperialism.+5th&ots=KJPe1q6Hdm&sig=YCksPFB7-u42VFvgW3ogoqF54Ig#v=onepage&q&f=false

Related Topics

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay
Materials Daily
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
Free Plagiarism
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!


Emma Taylor


Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Can't find What you were Looking for?

Get access to our huge, continuously updated knowledge base

The next update will be in:
14 : 59 : 59