When eastern Pakistan seceded from greater Pakistan in , it named itself Bangladesh: desa means "country"; bangla means not the Bengali people or the Bengali territory but the Bengali language.
Scratch most nationalist movements and you find a linguistic grievance. The demands for independence of the Baltic states Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia were intimately bound up with fears for the loss of their respective languages and cultures in a sea of Russianness.
In Belgium the war between French and Flemish threatens an already weakly fused country. The present atmosphere of Belgium is dark and anxious, costive; the metaphor of divorce is a staple of private and public discourse. Worship of the French language fortifies the movement for an independent Quebec. Whether a united Canada will survive into the twenty-first century is a question too close to call.
Much of the anxiety about language in the United States is probably fueled by the "Quebec problem": unlike Belgium, which is a small European country, or Sri Lanka, which is halfway around the world, Canada is our close neighbor.
Language is a convenient surrogate for nonlinguistic claims that are often awkward to articulate, for they amount to a demand for more political and economic power. They frequently couch this as a demand for a linguistic state, which has a certain simplicity about it, a clarity of motive -- justice, even, because states in India are normally linguistic states.
But the Sikh demands blend religion, economics, language, and retribution for sins both punished and unpunished in a country where old sins cast long shadows. Language is an explosive issue in the countries of the former Soviet Union. The language conflict in Estonia has been especially bitter. Ethnic Russians make up almost a third of Estonia's population, and most of them do not speak or read Estonian, although Russians have lived in Estonia for more than a generation.
Estonia has passed legislation requiring knowledge of the Estonian language as a condition of citizenship. Nationalist groups in independent Lithuania sought restrictions on the use of Polish -- again, old sins, long shadows. In protests erupted in Moldova, formerly the Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic, over language and the teaching of Moldovan history. Was Moldovan history a part of Romanian history or of Soviet history?
Was Moldova's language Romanian? But in the days of the Moldavian SSR, Moscow insisted that the two languages were different, and in a piece of linguistic nonsense required Moldavian to be written in the Cyrillic alphabet to strengthen the case that it was not Romanian.
The official language of Yugoslavia was Serbo-Croatian, which was never so much a language as a political accommodation. The Serbian and Croatian languages are mutually intelligible. Serbian is written in the Cyrillic alphabet, is identified with the Eastern Orthodox branch of the Catholic Church, and borrows its high-culture words from the east -- from Russian and Old Church Slavic. Croatian is written in the Roman alphabet, is identified with Roman Catholicism, and borrows its high-culture words from the west -- from German, for example, and Latin.
One of the first things the newly autonomous Republic of Serbia did, in , was to pass a law decreeing Serbian in the Cyrillic alphabet the official language of the country. With Croatia divorced from Serbia, the Croatian and Serbian languages are diverging more and more. Serbo-Croatian has now passed into history, a language-museum relic from the brief period when Serbs and Croats called themselves Yugoslavs and pretended to like each other.
Slovakia, relieved now of the need to accommodate to Czech cosmopolitan sensibilities, has passed a law making Slovak its official language. Czech is to Slovak pretty much as Croatian is to Serbian. Doctors in state hospitals must speak to patients in Slovak, even if another language would aid diagnosis and treatment. Some , Slovaks -- more than 10 percent of the population -- are ethnically Hungarian. Even staff meetings in Hungarian-language schools must be in Slovak.
The government dropped a stipulation that church weddings be conducted in Slovak after heavy opposition from the Roman Catholic Church. Language inspectors are told to weed out "all sins perpetrated on the regular Slovak language. The twentieth century is ending as it began -- with trouble in the Balkans and with nationalist tensions flaring up in other parts of the globe. Toward the end of his life Bismarck predicted that "some damn fool thing in the Balkans" would ignite the next war.
Language isn't always part of the problem. But it usually is. Some countries manage to maintain their unity in the face of multilingualism. Examples are Finland, with a Swedish minority, and a number of African and Southeast Asian countries.
Two others could not be more unlike as countries go: Switzerland and India. German, French, Italian, and Romansh are the languages of Switzerland.
The first three can be and are used for official purposes; all four are designated "national" languages. Switzerland is politically almost hyperstable. It has language problems Romansh is losing ground , but they are not major, and they are never allowed to threaten national unity.
Contrary to public perception, India gets along pretty well with a host of different languages. The renaissance was a cultural and artistic movement dating from the early 16th to the early 17th centuries. It is associated Bilingual Education words - 6 pages Bilingual education has drove on.
Bilingual education has failed however, currently the movement is towards and English only educational system. The History and Analysis of the English Language words - 16 pages from its earliest roots.
It is for this reason that it will not only remain the language that the world uses for the improvement of life, but it will also begin to touch more lives and societies every decade as the world continues to become a much smaller place.
When coming back from prison in , things changed in India. The people if India were forced to mimic the English on how they dressed, copy their manner and accept their standards of beauty. Faced with the cultural diversity brought by immigrants, many nativists worry that the United States will lose the English language as an important core of a common cultural unity.
But many of these struggles would be a little easier for those who have learned English as their first language It is a sign of who we are and where we come from. As language defines us, so does it unite us, but it can also impose barriers that drive us apart. As our society aggressively pursues globalization, individuals who maintain cultural sensitivity and strive for effective communication despite language barriers will be an increasingly important commodity; individuals who can also pass the gift of adept communication to others will be invaluable This act would make english the official language of the U.
What does that mean. It means that every service given by the government will only be given in english. So what's going to happen to all the people that don't know how to speak English.
How are they going to understand. Throughout U. In earlier decades, such immigrants were mainly from Europe and China. Aggressive assimilation policies targeting Native Americans e.
More recently, immigration from Latin America, particularly Mexico, has spurred the English-only movement to aggressive action on various fronts. Though it did not outlaw bilingual education outright, Proposition severely restricted the educational options available to students learning English, and established various bureaucratic hurdles to the provision of educational services in other languages.Language is tearing apart countries around the world, and the proponents of "Official English" may be ready to add America to the list. April Issue WE have known race riots, draft riots, labor violence, secession, anti-war protests, and a whiskey rebellion, but one kind of trouble we've never had: a language riot. Language essay It degree like a joke. The very idea of language as a political force -- as writing that might threaten masters split a country wide apart john book witness essay writer is alien to our way of thinking and to our cultural traditions. This may be changing.
The struggles of ESL students are even greater; it is nearly impossible for them to produce degree-level academic content. Order total: American Literature begins with the Native Americans. Today immigrants are now settling in the United States whose origins span from all around the world. The usual arguments made by academics against Official English are commonsensical. In this list the United States of America is excluded.
When it comes to subjects, students most commonly struggle with projects for Business, English language, and Management courses. They frequently couch this as a demand for a linguistic state, which has a certain simplicity about it, a clarity of motive -- justice, even, because states in India are normally linguistic states. Official English is politically very incorrect.
Set against all this, the fact that Switzerland has four languages doesn't even approach the threshold of becoming a threat.