Essay Sample on Significance of Language

Published: 2022-12-15
Essay Sample on Significance of Language
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Languages
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 670 words
6 min read

Language form an integral part of human social practices and communication. Without language, it would be difficult to communicate. Noam Chomsky, one of the most celebrated American linguist, argues that human language is a distinctive quality of the human mind that makes a human as is known today. He also adds that style is not only a means of expression but a tool that defines and uniquely differentiate one is identified from the other (Chomsky). Almost agree with Chomsky's argument, Lera Boroditsky argues that language plays a significant role in shaping the way we think. In her article, "How does our language shape the way we think?" argues that language is an essential tool of communication and expressing oneself, but plays a crucial role in shaping how we think. On the hand, Pallavi Polanki's article "Operation Mind Your Language," also suggest that language, in particular, English, is a vital tool for if the young Afghanistan youth to succeed. Polanki mainly focuses on learning and the teaching aspects of the English language in Afghanistan.

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Both authors agree that a Language is a vital tool for expressing one's thoughts and feelings, which forms the basis for communication. For instance, for nearly a decade, Afghanistan has been considered as the headquarters of the 'global war on terror,' and the arrival over thirty different nationalities on the country has brought a substantial linguistic challenge. In efforts to address this challenge, the nation has been forced to adopt English to be the third language in addition to the two national words and soon to be, a native language as Wardak claims (Polanki). Boroditsky on the other hand, argues that the primary role of language is expressing oneself. In her research, she randomly asked students to choose the sense they can survive without while she got different answers; not of the students decided to lose the language. Language forms a fundamental part of human experience, so thick that it is almost impossible to live without it. She acknowledges that apart from the language being used as a tool for expressing our thoughts, it has other functions.

To some degree, both authors agree that in did language shapes our way of thinking. For instance, Boroditsky argues that language might have been considered untestable and more often wrong. However, her research showed that different speakers of different languages have different ways of thinking and any flukes of grammar have profound effects on how they view the world (Boroditsky). Boroditsky has compared several languages and how these languages affect or influence how basic concepts such as time, directions, space, and color are perceived or thought by different language speakers. Her findings show that the various rules of a particular language, influence how one thing about certain things. For example, she compares the verb 'read' and how the word is interpreted between English and Russian speakers. She found that what an English speaker would consider thinking about the word is very different from what the Russian speaker would think (Boroditsky).

Similarly, in Polanki's article, such students as Hakima and Wardak believe that by learning English, they have a straight ticket to success, "English is our link to the world, and it is imperative for Afghanistan to connect with other countries," says Hakima one of students studying RIE at Mysore. The National Council Education Research Training program stakeholders and the students believe that learning English will enable them to succeed in their careers and life as Hakima argues. Thus, it is evident in both cases that language has a significant influence on how we think. While Afghanistan students believe that learning the English language will help them succeed, prove Boroditsky's argument that language shapes our way of thinking.

Work Cited

Lera. How Does Our Language Shape the Way We Think? 6 November 2009. article. 21 March 2019.

Chomsky, Noam. Noam Chomsky. 1996. <>.

Polanki, Pallavi. Operation Mind Your Language. 29 May 2010. article. 21 March 2019.

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