International languages — Интернациональные языки

As far as you know, there are lots of languages in the world, and some of them fall into category of international languages or languages of wider communication, such as French, English, German, Spanish, Russian, Italian and Arabic. All these languages are the official languages of the UN. All of them fall into the category of the official languages of UNESCO.

Mass media nowadays play an important role in everyone’s life. But, undoubtedly, most radio and TV programs are broadcast in such languages as English, Russian, French, German, Arabic and Chinese. Among all these languages only English and French are the official languages of the European international organizations. Among all these languages English is rightly considered to be the international language of the world.

One sometimes forgets how recently it is that English has assumed the function of the «world language». It was only in the 1930 that the British Foreign Office stopped using French for all its official memoranda. But things that grow so quickly can also change very quickly. 604 million of people, many more have some knowledge of English now than 30 years ago; but while the numbers have risen the quality and the range of command has dropped and the opportunities for using English have shrunk in general. As an alternative all-purpose vehicle of communication, English is spreading greatly in such countries as Singapore, or among elite in certain African countries.

A very marked rise is evident in the use of English for occupation purposes: English is the international language of the air, and failure to use it efficiently can endanger passenger safety. English is the language of banking and industry; many international firms, based in non-English countries conduct their...


entire operations throughout the world in English. There aren’t any other linguistic reasons why English might be the world language, ’cause to anyone learning English, it’s neither more simple nor more complex than any other language. Basically, it’s a historical accident. Presumably, English is easy to get along in to some extent, ’cause it doesn’t have a complex morphology, at least. George Orwell observed that there are two major linguistic reasons: one is its grammatical simplicity and the other is the cosmopolitan vocabulary of English.

English, with its wider geographic base, its 300 million of native speakers, its utility as a tool of learning and its importance in science, technology and commerce, is now incontestably the international language of the world. Whether it will be so a hundred years from now depends on political, economic and cultural factors more than on the characteristic of the language itself: but one thing looks certain — English will not fragment, as Latin did.

As for me, English plays an important role in my life. I have been studying English for 10 years and each year my knowledge of English becomes wider and more profound. Though I’m not sure in choosing my future career, I think that it may be easier to get a job with some knowledge of English, ’cause English is an international language and so many firms, even in our country conduct their entire operations throughout the world in English. But, as we know, English is the language, which grows very quickly, so it can also change very quickly. Nowadays a great importance is given to Esperanto. Lots of specialists consider that it may become the international language of the world in nearest future.


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