Some people think that it is important to have a single language as an international official language. Others think that it will make it difficult to identify countries and cause a loss of culture. What are your opinions on this?
With the advent of globalization, a common language to facilitate trade and communication seems inevitable. Some oppose the development of a single language on the grounds that it may lead to cultural erosion and a loss of local linguistic knowledge. Yet, I am of the opinion that it is possible to use an official international language and still retain one’s own language and culture.
Firstly, many countries already use an official language or languages. For example, in India there are two official languages: Hindi and English. In a country such as India where there are innumerable languages spoken, there is a need for official languages to ensure communication between different sections of the population and the different states. In China, where different dialects are spoken, Mandarin, the official language, enables people from different provinces to comprehend each other.
Secondly, in an age of rampant globalization there is no doubt that an international language is inevitability. How is an African businessman going to conduct business in China when there are such differences between languages? In this sense, not only is an international language inevitable, but also a necessity for trade, commerce and economic expansion in the 21st century.
The critics opposing the adoption of an international official language argue that it would lead to a loss of cultural identity. However, the use of an international official language doesn’t mean that local languages will die out. For example, English already functions as a kind of unofficial international language but this doesn’t mean that people solely converse in English or they neglect their own language. English is used in specific contexts (trade, business, etc) and native languages are used for everyday instruction.
In brief, as the world becomes smaller the need for an official international language seems unavoidable. English has already assumed this role although its status is unofficial. In my view, the use of either an official or unofficial international language is necessary to facilitate communication in a time of rapid globalization.