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Linguaholic

English is a true window to the world…


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Though English isn’t my native language, I love how it becomes a window to the world. It allows communication between people of such diverse countries as the united states, Australia, Europe, parts of Asia (such as India, for example) and much more. If the diversity of language is precious, yet nevertheless the barriers to communication created by that diversity can be a dark wall that prevents friendships between peoples around the world. So this is what English is to me, a key that opens locks, a way to talk across the world with like-minded people who do not speak my native language, a way to make friends and to bring different places on this planet closer to my mind and my heart.

And how did English change your life?

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Well, as a native English speaker it is nice to know you feel so positively about the language.  :wink:

What I have discovered is that those who speak American English are sadly lacking in the ability to communicate outside our own culture (and sometimes even within it!). A lot of us never learn any language other than our own, and when in another country simply assume that the natives of that place should be able to speak English to us. It tends to make us a bit unpopular on the whole, and rightly so in my opinion.

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Well, as a native English speaker it is nice to know you feel so positively about the language.  :wink:

What I have discovered is that those who speak American English are sadly lacking in the ability to communicate outside our own culture (and sometimes even within it!). A lot of us never learn any language other than our own, and when in another country simply assume that the natives of that place should be able to speak English to us. It tends to make us a bit unpopular on the whole, and rightly so in my opinion.

As a native English speaker in the United States, I must say I agree with this.  There is a tendency to take knowing the English language for granted.  Yet the irony is that there are a good number of Americans who do not ever really master English as their native language.  Grammatical errors and spelling errors are common.  Plus some have a tendency to use conversational crutches, i.e. loading up sentences with "like" and "you know" because of the inability to articulate thoughts and feelings. 

All the while, people in other countries learn English as a second language and are much more motivated to master it. They are able to appreciate the language for the reasons others have mentioned on this thread; it is a way to communicate and connect with others from around the world.

I am grateful to know the language, and I am particularly grateful that my parents were insistent that I learn proper spelling and grammar even though, at times, they could be taskmasters!

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English definitely opens up A world, if not THE world. I mean, just imagine what kind of new cultural and communicative experiences Spanish offers in South America, North America, and Europe...and French offers in Canada, the Caribbean, and France...and Arab offers in Northern Africa and Southern Asia...and Chinese for a sixth of the world's population....Glad you've found so much satisfaction with English:) Just don't stop there!

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I too am happy to hear that someone actually enjoys english! It seems to me that the general opinion of english speakers is bad in most countries. This is understandable though, some Americans are of the opinion that everybody should know english and there is no need for other languages (as some others mentioned). And it really is sort of sad, that so many people feel no motivation to learn a new language and venture out of their comfort zone.

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It's definitely a window to the world. It's important to be able to communicate properly, especially online or you will be blatantly misjudged. According to me, it's never too late to learn and one can learn no matter how old they are. I see people giving up and continuously repeating the same mistakes and they don't tend to learn. It makes it very difficult for them to be understood by other people. Also, it's not necessarily true that people who's native language is English, don't commit mistakes. It's really important to develop a writing as well as a reading habit to excel in any language.

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I find that Americans do use a lot of conversational fillers like "like" and "you know"!

I also despise the very common American habit of pronouncing "nuclear" like "nuculer". I hear George W. Bush talk about "nuculer weapons" while being interviewed on CNN !

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I wasn't taught English since my childhood. It was not a a part of my education. Yeah, I learnt some words like dog, cat and other names, but hadn't known how to string any meaningful sentence. It wasn't until 3 years ago when I set out on a quest to get the hang off this language which was alien to me up until now. And I haven't looked back since  then. I am gradually improving every day.

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I agree that English can be a true window to the world, however, in my opinion  there is also a "dark side" about English being so ubiquitous: it rules out other languages and this is, at least for me, very very sad. Language diversity is really beautiful and in this world, where English is literally everywhere, I am always pleased to find some places/regions where English is not spoken or at least not very common/popular. It also makes studying languages much in some cases, because if you are going to a country where people do not speak/understand English, you will probably need to speak to them in your "target language" and this will boost your skills in that language a lot. Even better if you do not have any English-speaking friends around you...this way, you will be fluent in any kind of language in NO TIME (that is a little bit exaggerated but you know what I mean).

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I am a native English speaker and I agree English is "the window to the world". This is usually considered a good thing since everyone can have a universal "business" language to speak with.

The problem though is that native English speakers get insensitive and narrow-minded especially Americans. I feel like Americans (I'm American) are out of touch with the world and the cultures around them. Mostly everyone around the world can name the president on the United States but Americans couldn't name a single figurehead outside of America. Nationalism also happens where Americans insist that everyone learns how to speak English properly in America without realizing how difficult it could be.

All in all, I think English is important and has enabled international communication links. I just think native English speakers shouldn't be ignorant of other languages and cultures.

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Most people you meet, no matter where they are from, are able to speak some basic English words and phrases at least so it is really a language that makes you able to be part of the world. Besides that all the important things in Western civilization is written in English. Not only in English but every time.

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I do believe that English is a window to the world, English is my second language and whenever I go to other countries, I use it to communicate with other people. Most countries use English as their second language. Most people can speak and understand English, even the basic one.

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There are millions of people in China learning English at this very moment (India had the benefit of being an ex-British colony, so the average urban Indian is much more fluent in English than the average urban Chinese). English will remain the dominant language, but it will have stiff competition from  Mandarin Chinese within the next 50 years or so.

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