The most striking fact is that almost 80 percent of English speakers in the world are non-native speakers of the language. Thus, English is considered to be the world’s lingua franca. As a result, there is a growing interest in learning English which becomes a necessity.
For many of you, the word “Lingua Franca” sounds a bit weird and you keep questioning “what is Lingua Franca?” Don’t worry, this article will provide you with a short description and definition of “Lingua Franca” is.
|Source: EN Inglés|
1. What is “Lingua Franca”?
In a nutshell, any language or dialect that is used for communication between two people or more who do not share the same language or dialect is called “a lingua franca”.
Historically speaking, Khodorkovsky (2013) stated the emergence of a lingua franca was related to commercial, cultural, or religious reasons. Travelers and traders needed to communicate with the locals or other merchants via a language that would be understood by all. So, they opted for a shared one.
Currently, English language has become one of the most powerful lingua franca(s). The next section will explain the main reasons why English is the present lingua franca.
2. English as a Lingua Franca (ELF)
“English is the largest of human tongues, with several times the vocabulary of the second largest language — this alone made it inevitable that English would eventually become, as it did, the lingua franca of this planet, for it is thereby the richest and most flexible — despite its barbaric accretions . . . or, I should say, because of its barbaric accretions. English swallows up anything that comes its way, makes English out of it.”
Robert A. Heinlein—Stranger in a Strange Land
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References and others to consult
1. Crystal, D. 2003. English as a Global Language (Second edition). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
2. Maria, Khodorkovsky.( August 19, 2013). How is English Used as a Lingua Franca Today?. Retrived from https://www.altalang.com/beyond-words/how-is-english-used-as-a-lingua-franca-today/
3. Nordquist, Richard. (2020, April 3). English as a Lingua Franca (ELF). Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/english-as-a-lingua-franca-elf-1690578
4. Widdowson, H. G. 2003. Defining Issues in English Language Teaching. Oxford: Oxford UniversityPress.