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Tomasz Poznanski

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Will we eventually have one global language?

Lately, I found myself wondering whether we are slowly sailing towards one global language. If you take a closer look at the current linguistic processes around the world, you will quickly notice that there is a limited number of languages that substantially influence all other languages. Such media like the Internet only intensify this process.

If we assume that English shall continue to spread and make such a tremendous impact worldwide, is it prudent to say that our languages are gradually melting into one? Will they transform overtime to the extent that despite using different languages we will be able to understand each other?

Or are we evolving to bilingualism/multilingualism? Our mother tongue will be retained, but the "overlord" language will be required to fully participate in the global affairs.

Would it make our everyday existence easier, or - on the other hand - would losing other languages trigger a decline in culture-dependent thought diversity?
(see linguistic relativity or Sapir-Whorf hypothesis for details)

Please share your thoughts.


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    Nov 13 2013: I don't think we are evolving to multilingualism--I think we have always had it in our nature. A multitude of languages still exist in use in the world and are being used functionally and productively--especially if we look at the concept of language more broadly as a tool for communication and sense-making. It's hard to imagine all but one disappearing.
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      Nov 19 2013: Hi Marjorie,
      If you lived in Europe, you might well believe that multilingualism could be the norm.

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