English For Specific Purpose In Computerese Essay

30157 WordsJun 25, 2011121 Pages
INTRODUCTION English is generally acknowledged to be the world’s most important language. It is perhaps worth glancing briefly at the basis of its evolution for that evaluation. There are thousands of different languages in the world, and each will seem uniquely important to those who speak it as their native language, the language they acquired at their mother’s knee. But there are more objective standards of relative importance. One criterion is the number of speakers of the respective language. A second is the extent to which a language is geographically dispersed: in how many continents it is used or is knowledge of it necessary? A third is its functional load: how extensive is the range of purposes manifestations such as a science or a literature? A fourth is the economic and political influence of the native speakers of the language. If we restrict the first criterion to native speakers of the language, the number of speakers of English is more than 300 million, and English ranks well below Chinese (which has over three times that number of speakers). The second criterion, the geographical dispersal of the language, invites comparison with (for example) Hebrew, Latin, and Arabic as languages used in major world religions, though only Arabic has a substantial number of speakers. But the spread of English over most of the world as an international language is a unique phenomenon in the world’s history: about 1500 million people – over a third of the world’s population – live in countries where English has some official status or is one of the native languages, if not the dominant native language. By the third criterion, the great literatures of the Orient spring to mind, not to mention the languages of Tolstoy, Goethe, Cervantes and Racine. But in addition to bring the language of the still more distinguished Shakespeare, English leads as the

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