The Triumph of the English Language




some towns are using English first/English only legislation to promote anti-immigrant nativism
Photo Credit:VivirLatino

In 1992 a prominent US linguist stunned the academic world by predicting that by the year 2100, 90% of the world's languages would have ceased to exist (1).

There were 7,000 languages being spoken at that time which means that by the 22nd century there could still be around 700 languages in use, still far too many. English, of course, will be the dominant language.

I think all the languages of the world except English need to be put in storage for archival and academic purposes.

The variety of babble we have today hinders scientific advancement, keeps much of the underdeveloped world underdeveloped, retards communication, and holds back immigrant assimilation into their host country.

Blogger A. Fatih Syuhud from Indonesia explains why he blogs in English:

A. Fatih Syuhud, Ten Reasons Why We Blog in English

There are at least top ten reasons on why an Indonesian blogger should blog in English. If you run a Bahasa Indonesia blog, like I do, you should have an English speaking blog as well. Here’s why:

...

4. Indonesian voices very much under-represented in the outside world simply because hardly any books, academic publication and conventional media are written in English. Indonesia — a country with more than 240 million population– has a very few English newspapers / magazines / portals and none of existing Indonesian magazines are in English. And hardly any best seller Indonesian books written by prominent intellectuals are written in or translated into English.


What Syuhud leaves out is that children who learn to speak English have a greater opportunity to succeed in the world. This is especially true in the Arabic world. There are more book titles published in English in ten days than the total number of foreign language books that were translated into Arabic in the past ten centuries. It is no wonder that only one person born in an Arabic-speaking country has ever won a scientific Nobel Prize, Ahmed Zewail in Chemistry.

It is time, World. French, German, Norwegian are all fine as a second language, but it's time to learn a world-class language, the one that is used for air traffic control, for 95% of everything written in science and discovery, and for some of the greatest entertainment in the world.

Correction

I was thinking of Muslims when I wrote "... only one person born in an Arabic-speaking country has ever won a scientific Nobel Prize..." Actually 7 Jews from Arab-speaking parts of the Middle East have won scientific Nobel prizes, see Nobel Prize Winners of the Arab World.






ENDNOTES


(1):

BBC, The death of language?

An estimated 7,000 languages are being spoken around the world. But that number is expected to shrink rapidly in the coming decades. What is lost when a language dies?

...

"Most people are not at all interested in the death of languages," he says. "If we are not cautious about the way English is progressing it may eventually kill most other languages."

According to Ethnologue, a US organisation owned by Christian group SIL International that compiles a global database of languages, 473 languages are currently classified as endangered.



### End of my article ###

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