The Language Barrier – Can it Be Overcome?
1. What uses if any, have you made of knowledge of foreign languages for the following purposes and what benefits (if any) would you make if you were fluent, near fluent, conversant on elementary or intermediate level in the following areas:
a. Business and advertising b. Tourism and travel abroad c. Additional useful knowledge about other peoples, places and cultures d. academic study in your chosen field/degree e. Better appreciation of great classics of literature/casual reading in the original language f. Gaining new friends/acquaintances you otherwise would not have met (Do you have any friends who are not English speakers?) g. Employment in teaching, translation/interpreting h. hobbies, sport, recreation
IS there a cost?
2. As a taxpayer, are you aware of the expense incurred by local and national government agencies to provide services in a few/ several/many languages/ practically all languages wherever needed. Should we draw a line somewhere? Only 2 at the Treaty of Versailles (1920) 6 required in the U.N.; 27 in the E.U. Rough estimates of public expenditure. What are the limits? NHS spends £100 million on TRANSLATORS in 128 languages. Police and court expenditures. How could this money be spent better?
3.How Did the World Get this Way? The Language Families and “Tree”; its Diverse Branches. cognates. The Language tree and it branches. The Major Families Lecture and discussion. Look at the list of 10 most spoken (number of native language users) and explain why it is NOT the best measure of the importance of languages on a world scale?
4. Language Conflicts, Ireland, Belgium, Canada, India, The Two Norwegian Languages, South Africa, Spain, Malta, Israel, Scots (Gaelic), Welsh, Yugoslavia torn apart. Languages and Dialects. Designed Languages.
5. Become Multilingual Depend on technology -Translation machines? Google Translate. What do they claim? What are still the drawbacks. Examples of how they make mistakes. 5. Proposals to solve the Problem – We all speak. English, Greek, Russian, Spanish Chinese. Esperanto Something Else? BASIC ENGLISH by Prof. C. K. Ogden
6. Devised Languages. Esperanto and its Competitors. Introduction to Esperanto. A One Hour crash course.