Advantages And Disadvantages Of The English Language's Expansion Around The World

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During the past several decades, English has come to great prominence as an international language. This is due to certain factors such as becoming the mother tongue of millions of people all over the world, the language that many children learn at school, one of the main languages that is used in international communication, as well as the major language of world media. Moreover, English has come to be used as a medium through which people with different backgrounds and different cultures can more easily create and sustain connections and relationships. So great has English become as a world language that terms such as ‘World Englishes’ and ‘Global English’ have been created in order to describe the phenomenon of the English language’s expansion around the world. It is the aim of this essay to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using these terms and relate them to the different aspects of English as a global language. Firstly, English is used by many people around the world as a lingua franca. A lingua franca is a language that is used as a common language of communication between different groups of people who do not share a common first language (Lingua Franca, 2015). For example, Mullany and Stockwell (2010) point out that in South Africa, with its eleven official languages, English is used as a lingua franca in all official documentation and governmental institutions. Another example can be seen in Europe where, out of all of the 23 official languages of the

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