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Linguaholic

One language for everyone?


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The world already has that, it is English, for better or worse, it used to be French not too long ago, and Greek and Latin before that (although those were not worldwide languages but mostly the "lingua franca" of most of Europe, North Africa and parts of Asia).  As soon as you start to lear about other languages you discover that different tongues have expressions that you lack in your native language, and that you posses ways to express yourself that other languages lack, in my opinion no language is complete and rich enough to serve as the general language for all mankind, a language is just more than a tool for communication, it is a way in which a culture approaches and understands the whole world, I am ok with having different paradigms all over the world.

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I believe that there was a time everyone in the world spoke one language and since history often does repeat itself, eventually again, everyone in the world will be speaking one language. I don't believe though that it will be English. I believe that "Textese" will be the new global language.

Would it be better if we all spoke just one language? To be honest I don't think so.



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I'm all for that idea. Then everyone could choose whatever other second or third languages they wanted. It would make everything so much easier the whole world through. I do think that will happen eventually. We will all be one color and speak one language and have one culture. I think it's inevitable...

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The idea of a universal language does  initially seem possible, but when you delve into the idea, it's not all that plausible. It would take many, many years to ingrain a new language into the tongues of people who have been speaking their own language for centuries. English is almost becoming a standard around the world, but there always those few old men who refuse to speak anything but their native tongue... Besides, there would always be a dispute over which language should be standardized. While it might seem reasonable that English be standardized, that wouldn't make the German or Spanish speakers happy and there would undeniably be dispute over it. Besides, who would enforce a standardized language, and who would pay to educate those who didn't already know the language? Even if a standardized language would make us "unified" in that sense, nobody will ever be truly unified because of it; people would be no more unified than two parties in a civil war. Even if our language is unified, we'll always find something to separate ourselves from others of other countries.

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Yes, but as a second language.  And it should obviously be English. It's already being taught in schools around the world, it just needs to be done a little better. For example, schools in The Netherlands only start teaching English in the last year of middle school (age 11-12). They should move that back at least 5 years. This way it's pretty much impossible not to become fluent, and that's a pretty important skill to have in today's society.

Also, I have no clue what South American schools are doing in English class but clearly it is not working. The majority of Latinos that I meet on the internet almost always reply in Spanish and don't even know basic English.

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It would be definitely way more easy, imagine traveling? Asking for food or even street indications would be the easiest thing in the world but at the same time it would be bored as hell, man. I think that languages are what makes a culture different from another, because al cultures have a different way to conceptualize things, they give it a different meaning, a different way to perceive concepts and express them, and the fact that there are that many languages in the world makes the whole thing way more diverse, and I live for diversity. 

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Interesting topic. As people have already said, this is already happening to an extent with English. It isn’t supplanting other major languages (yet) but it’s becoming the common language of business, technology and popular culture. English has a certain kudos that French used to have. When I read an online article in Romanian about tennis, say, I’ll sometimes see occasional (often grammatically incorrect) English phrases sprinkled throughout the otherwise Romanian text. Tennis is a world sport, so the authors expect their audience to be worldly and sophisticated, and what better way to say to the reader “you’re sophisticated” than to write “you know it’s the true”?

 

If English does eventually displace other languages, there will be several Englishes, not just one, because different parts of the world have huge cultural differences and I don’t see that changing any time soon. In fact there are many different Englishes already. Here in New Zealand, Maori words like ‘mana’ and ‘whanau’ have been assimilated into the language because they’re culturally important concepts that have no real equivalent in ‘standard’ English.

 

Somebody suggested that a common language would unite people. Perhaps it would. I certainly think that learning other languages helps to unite people. In continental Europe people commonly learn two or three foreign languages, including of course English. In the UK you typically learn just one, from the age of 11, and there’s the sense that you’re only learning it to pass an exam because in the real world everybody speaks English. This idea that Brits don’t need to learn other languages sets them apart from other European nations and fosters an “un-European” identity, a feeling that helped swing the referendum towards the Leavers in June.

 

Personally I think being immersed in different languages is the coolest thing, so I wouldn't want to see it! Others might disagree.

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Isn't that already happening in the form of English as the preferred "international language"? It would be hard to go back to the biblical times wherein people only spoke one language before God changed things, but at least English is the closest that we have to having a universal language.

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I think it's a good idea if we all had one single language to communicate among each other, it would definitely make things much easier and we wouldn't feel as afraid when talking to other people that speak a different language since we all would speak the same one. With that aside, I don't think it will ever be possible since there are so many different cultures so many people around the world with so many different backgrounds that speaking a same language throughout the world would make them lose their identity, they wouldn't be who they are now. So we all should learn as many languages as possible so we can all communicate very well and we can reach as many people as we want.

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I think we've already achieved that goal. When it comes to business and trade, the lingua franca is English. When it comes to entertainment, it varies from country to country. Although it's an unwritten rule, many people know that English is the language of choice if the goal is to create networks and to make money. A few decades ago, people said that the language of commerce would change from English to Mandarin, but even Chinese businesses are making their proposals and advertisements. That says a lot about people's support for English as the language of commerce.

Personally, I don't think we should tell people to forget their native tongues and just speak one language all over the world. Our native tongue reflects our native culture, and what a shame it would be if we decided to forget our native tongue in pursuit of money. I think we're going the right path by adopting English as the language of business, but not make a single language, whatever it may be, everyone's sole language.

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There is a beautiful story in Bible.Once human beings had one language. One day they decided to build a ladder to heaven. They gathered and began building the ladder. The Gods became suspicious, they thought once human beings reach heaven through the ladder they are building, they will topple God's  kingdom. Then they gave different language to the people. Now the people who were building the ladder spoke different language.They did not understand what the other person was saying. This created a confusion and eventually fight ensued.

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