|Categories:||English 101 Linguistics Languages|
It is realized that language, economy, and culture, therefore, have a common bond or interdependency. While culture is a tool, practice assumption, or behavioral pattern that members of a certain group possess, communication is the tool they use to express that behavioral pattern and demarcate themselves from another group. Culture is all about identity, while communication is the channel of that identity. However culture and communication are not done without a purpose. It happens to be that people may like to identify themselves mostly for economic subsistence in the society.
English is one of the worlds richest dialects after the Chinese and the Hindi languages. English is spoken, while American is understood. With the current increasing world population, the figure of current native speakers stands at 375 million and the number is increasing each and every day. As a result of such massive number of speakers, English has had a great impact on the social, political and economic structural forms of different countries. Over 60 nations use English as their official language, a factor resulting into numerous sub dialects. Of all the sub dialects there are only four that are considered the native English dialects.
The most conspicuous are the American and British dialects of English. British English generalizes that particular English used in the United Kingdom and other affiliate countries even though there is a slight difference in the formality of how it is written. Such native speaking countries like Scotland, Northern Ireland and Yorkshire of the larger Great Britain are realized to possess slightly different forms of the same British English dialect. The major forms of British dialect are the English- English, the Irish- English and the Scottish-English.
English as a language has posted major influences on the society and culture of different speaking countries. This aspect of change as put in sociolinguistic works of many scholars; positions this language as the pillar that geared cultural and economic development due to lingual interaction in these countries and thus, led to the development of a common lingua franca. In the early Medevial England for instance, the language dialect that was majorly in use was the de facto, official dialect and was used in all UK. Under the charter for regional or minority languages, the government of UK got committed to promote certain dialects from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland into the national English language.
During the golden age when people interacted during trading incidents, language interaction took place. Several significant morphological and phonetical changes in the structures of these languages that were used while engaging in business activities changed. India for instance interacted a lot with the British. These interactions can be traced back to the days before the British Raj , when trading empires existed. During this time, the British troop in India sheltered in a small town called Deolali. This is the transit point where they would relax as they wait to be ferried back to UK. Over the years after such numerous transits, Deolali became so inhabitable due to its increasing temperatures and malaria that the troop started getting sick. Several mental disorders were getting registered which led to the name Doolally Tap. Such interactions led to major alterations in the phonetics and syllables of the two dialects that were interacting. English words like shampoo, khaki, mantra, pyjamas, nirvana and ginger were borrowed from the Indians during such age with other slight forms of pronunciation changes also registered. Nikesh (2001) says, Language distortion was inevitable with colonialism that the British would imbibe in the local culture and it would have a long lasting effect.
Economically, the interactions as a result of British Imperialism in China led to a strong economic bond that is still as important and functional as when it was published. Britain highly demanded silk and opium which prompted the signing of a trade treaty. The result was such a social cohesion that led to eradication of native cultures and imposition of wars. As to such activity, Hong Kong came into existence.
The geographical flow of English dialects is considered to originate from Britain to America then to consequent continents like Australia and New Zealand, Africa and to the Pacific. Through its movement through such regions several aspects in the form and nature of how it is spoken had a change. Of the many language interactions, the British-American language interaction had detrimental effects on the English dialect. The British colonization of America in 1600 had its effect on the language leading to the rise of Americanism. Several terms like fall for autumn and faucet for tap and others including words like diaper, candy and crib are but the few examples of change in this context. Archaic British usage of words like gotten for past tense of get and other forms has been tempered with. There have been a lot of new developments in the new American form of English clipped with differences in grammar, morphology and orthography. With such changes, it is evident that the pure relics of the contemporary UK English is dying to the American version of English. American influences has revitalized and invigorated British English and at the same time caused impoverishment (Shreya Bardhan, 2016).
As the language found its ways into Africa, it acquired different traits and forms. Several pidgins arose. These first forms of pidgin got stable and diverse. They include the Cameroon pidgin, the Liberian interior pidgin, the West African pidgin and the Solombala English.
One of the prominent forms of pidgin is the West African Pidgin English also referred to as the Creole English of the Guinea Coast. This form of English originates back to the period of slave trade when Africans were subjects to the British merchants. African sellers would use such language when communicating business terms of agreement to the British merchants. Later in history, this form of language was used was adopted as a native language by new African communities. Like other pidgin languages, west African pidgin took most of its vocabulary from English and much of the phonetics as well. This nautical form of language reports from of speech as that of the British but of rather more special vocabulary. For instance, words from the English vocabulary like friend is padi, krabit is for stingy in English and berlin for funeral.
In todays Africa, many languages compete with the metropolitan colonial languages as well as with the pidgins and creoles. African union has recommended the use of 50 languages to be supported by the Arabic and Swahili dialects as the only recommended native dialects. As recorded by Adegbija(2001), the most significant outcome of the interaction of the African and the British cohesion is the birth of the pidgin language, it is absolutely true since Africa came to develop major sectors significant to the thrive of any economy. Agricultural sector started booming. Education break through was also realized. Even if so, such languages come with challenges. For instance, perfect mastery of this language threatened the existence and use of the native African languages. People were getting used to the language so much that they were at the brinks of forgetting the structure of the native languages or even having to combine both. This led to low language development status of the native languages.
Another renowned pidgin language is the Jamaica Patios. This language originally developed as a pidgin but has now become a Creole. It is sad to realize that the native Jamaican language has no name or even root in the same country. Though Patios is the second language, it has become so reknown that every child born in Jamaica speaks it. Through this vast use, this language has been identified with the Jamaicans and has been able to present their culture and way of life. In accordance to them, the language records a point in their past. It symbolizes their slavery and colonization by the European masters. Even though the language is as a result of English influence and developed as its pidgin, it is in its own a very distinct system.
After looking at the different dialects of English and sub dialects, it is prudent that we look at the form of the language itself. The language is made up of Nouns. These are the literal names given to almost anything that can be seen or perceived. Then there are verbs, which are words used to describe all forms of action like run or walking. There are adverbs which are words or nouns that describe verbs. Adjective on the other hand; talk about nouns in detail.
Generally, of the many dialects and sub dialects of English, American dialect possess great threat to the contemporary British dialect. The American dialect contains pass-agg nonsense. America has a diverse cultural influence therefore most of the characters or individuals in this country have the freedom of expression at their own digression. With such freedom, they dont care about the form of language they use. Since this countrys form of language has a great impact in the current society, it is painful that it may erode the native British dialect and user in a new regime of language use. The dialect also encompasses the use of curious sentence structures and missing words. An example is; an American would say I love you, will you write me?. As you can realize, several questions will pop from that incomplete sentence. Write a poem? Postcard? Email or what. Yet, this sentence is simply trying to convey a message of someone who is trying to persuade to be loved back. Such curious words are intentions of reducing the level of creativity and self-explanation.
All in all, it is worth noting that with changes in the form of sub dialects of the contemporary English, a lot has been achieved, a lot is yet to be achieved still since with the hiking level of population and other considerable factors, many other sub dialects are yet to pop with most of the existing forms getting exposed to extinction. The children who are yet to be born will grow speaking completely strange languages to the native language. Cultural cohesion with aid of rapid globalization will ensure that people adapt to the new era in which several aspects of indeginosity shall have been erased. Therefore as much as it is brilliant interacting and learning new languages among other forms of social interaction, it should be realized that it is equally detrimental since such interactions after a period of time give birth to new ways of life which in the end destroys the natural aspect of cultural existence.
Fraser McAlpine(2009). The Brit List: Five ways Americans Ruined the English Language
OxfordLearner'sDictionary (2015), Entry: English Pronunciation
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Population by first language spoken and province. Statistics South Africa(2012).
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"Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the...
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