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Ties that constrict:English as a Trojan Horse - Essay Example

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Ties that constrict:English as a Trojan Horse

As Gauri Viswanathan and others have made it amply clear, the study of English was central to Britain’s rule of India, purposefully aimed, in Lord Macaulay’s infamous words, “to form a class who may be interpreters between us and the millions whom we govern; a class of persons, Indian in blood and color, but English in taste, in opinions, in morals, and in intellect.” (Viswanathan) That which was imposed by force, should be given the treatment that it deserves. This language has eroded the cultural traditions of the countries, where colonists ruled and dominated once. Do not accept English language uncritically. Resist it at every stage. What I mean is if the local language can be used for a particular project, do it by all means and encourage such usage. The native culture and the native languages must be protected, given opportunities for their growth at all times, and at all costs. The development of English should not be at the cost of devaluation of local languages and cultures. Language and political power are closely interrelated. Global use of English is the direct outcome of globalization in trade and commerce and it has turned out to be the important construct of neocolonialism. David Crystal opened his much-cited book on English as a Global Language by claiming “English is a global language,” he wrote, “the kind of statement which seems so obvious that most people would give it hardly a second thought.”(2) In his defense of English language as the global language Crystal articulates that the prospect that a lingua franca might be needed for the whole world. The process of its acceptance accelerated with globalization gaining ground and rapid spread of the internet revolution. Though English is taught through the subject of literature, it is the tool of the politicians and religious fanatics of their power games to implement the nefarious programs of cultural/religious impositions. People in the area of global business and export trade, form a miniscule part of the population of a developing country. Language learners in this area may experience the necessity of English language for correspondence and communications. But progress in the area of trade and commerce need not and will not be achieved through mastery on English language. The people of countries like Soviet Russia, Japan, Korea and China were not masters in English language and yet they achieved outstanding success in the field of economic development. A few English knowing translators can do the required jobs perfectly. Even the heads of the Nations do talks/negotiations taking the services of the interpreters. Some scholars echo the critique of the spread of English as “linguistic imperialism”, which may impoverish indigenous languages and cultures (Cooke, Phillipson) Global spread of English is undoubtedly the product of colonialism and it later turned out to be the most potent instrument of cultural control. I entirely agree with this conclusion of the knowledgeable authors. So, learn English as a language, but the developing nations must resist its dominance with all the strength at their command and from every national/international platforms. Robert Phillipson asserts that “globally, what we are experiencing is that English is both replacing other languages and displacing ...Show more


Subject: Essay, Business Date: Topic: Ties that Constrict: English as a Trojan Horse Trojan Horse, a program that is apparently desirable but in the real sense contains something harmful. The advocates of English language and the colonial powers that try to impose this language on the developing countries and the world at large are implementing a cleverly conceived plan to continue with their hegemony overtly or covertly…
Author : ffunk
Ties that constrict:English as a Trojan Horse essay example
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