IS ENGLISH AN INTERNATIONAL LANGUAGE?
Nowadays, more than 300,000,000 people speak English. People speak English as their first or native language, in countries suchas the United Kingdom, the United States, Australia or New Zealand. In other countries like Pakistan, India, Guyana or South Africa, English is not the mother tongue but people speak itas a second language. In Canada they have two official languages: English and French.
Since the beginning of the XX century, English has become the main language of internationalcommunication. Although Mandarin Chinese and Spanish both have more native speakers, English is certainly the world's most popular language in the World.
English is today an 'open'language. It has incorporated words from Latin, Greek and many modern languages. For example, many words derive from Hindi, such as 'pajamas' and 'bungalow'.
In Latin American and Europeancountries, English is a very important foreign language and people usually learn it at school.
English importance has grown since the World Wars of the last century. The cinema, music andtelevision have helped to take American culture into many countries that listen to American music and watch American films, sit-coms and cartoons.
There are, of course, various smalldifferences between the English that people use in different parts of the world. There are also numerous different accents, none of which is 'better' than the others.
The most commondifferences in English are between American and British English, but in Australia, Scotland and Ireland there are also differences in vocabulary.
For a long time, people around the worldhave considered English as the world's most important language.
Has this process finished? … Only time will answer this question…
by Kelly Hardrock
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