The English language developed and expanded all around the world under the colonial pressure of British Imperialism. Even after the departure of the British from the colonies, the colonised could not completely abandon the imperial language. The English language, which was initially thrust upon the colonised and was considered to be a sign of slavery, later became a mediator language. It soon attained the status of the Lingua Franca for those who emigrated from one colonised country to another. What was left by the British as a sign of imperialism and dominance ultimately became a tool in the hands of the colonized for ensuring global communication.
English today is like a shadow. It chases you. You can’t escape by making excuses. One has to adapt to, welcome, and foster the language for one’s own future prospects. Today, no one is ignorant of the importance of this language. It has grown powerful and belligerent. Perhaps more powerful than it was during colonial rule.But it has forced itself on other languages in such a manner that many native languages have lost their identity. This may be termed by some scholars as a loss of culture, which is a sensitive issue. In the 13th century, the Latin language enjoyed the same status as the English language today. It has become an international standard to use the English language for research and scholarship. Itisnolongeranimperiallanguage.
Blog written by:
Prof. Jayesh Mehta
Assistant Professor of English