Language performs different functions in the life of human being. People use language markers not just for identification of certain geographical phenomena but also for other purposes including education and business transaction. Different languages are spoken in Australia given the cosmopolite nature of the region. However, a majority of the people in this region use English as the primary language for communication in different spheres of life. Even though English is not Indigenous Australian indigenous language, it has gained root to rise above all languages formally spoken in this region to become the language with the highest number of speakers. English is today positioning itself as the most prominent and commonly spoken language in various contexts around the globe.
Currently, English has the second largest number of speakers around the globe after Arabic. The position of English as an international language gives it an advantage over any other language in the world, in fact, even more than Arabic, the world’s most spoken language. The role of English language in the global realms and Australia far much outweighs the formerly intended roles. This paper justifies the fact that being an expert user of English is far more important today and in the future, for social and personal success, than mere religious, ethnic, or cultural identity. In doing this, the paper borrows a lot from the speeches of Marcia Langton and Noel Pearson. The paper further explains how this assertion might be true (or false) for Indigenous Australians or for other Australians, including those who are new to the English language.
The position taken by the English language as an international language gives it a lot of prestige not only as a language of cultural, religious or any form of identity but a language of international demand. In the speeches of Marcia Langton and Noel Pearson, the duo cite international demand for communication as the main driving force behind the spread of English as a language for common communication among people from different ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. As Bolton, (2005) points out, Australia is one of the multiracial regions in the world. Different races and ethnic groups are represented in the region, representing different linguistic groups. Far from the aborigines of Australia, other races such as the black and the red races are represented in various parts of the country. Theory of nature dictates that whenever two or more people with different tongues come together, they tend to look for a common language for communication and interaction between them. If a language known to both is lacking, the parties involved develops a common language to be used for communication and interactions.
Australia represents the situation described above, the difference, however, is that a common language, English exists for use in communication and interaction purposes. According to Marcia Langton and Noel Pearson references, Australians and that entire are new in the English language need it today more than ever. They cite various reasons such as English being the language of literacy, language use for international relations, a language of business across the nations, and a language of common interaction between people from different linguistic groups. English is today considered the language of the masses and is used by an increasing majority to carry out different communication needs across the globe (Bruthiaux, 2002). To begin with, English is considered a language of education and issuance of instruction in different media and levels of learning.
Australia Grin, (2001) is currently a centre for education with famous universities and other academic institutions that have had an international reputation as one of the best and top ranked teaching and learning institutions in the world. As a result, several people are migrating into the region to seek education and training in various fields of study. The English language being the language of the masses and an international language for instructions and training as well as its increased use as the first language of the locals continues to attract many to visit the region. There is, therefore, every need for all people in Australia, including those that are not well acquainted with the language to get acquainted with it as the preferred communication and instructional language in the region and beyond.
Besides, Australia is exposed to the external worlds through trade and industry. Many international and regional industries and other manufacturing units are currently located in Australia. Besides, many Australians are moving into other regions to participate in various activities including trade, education, tourism, and such related activities. All these activities call for a common language of expression and communication between the various parties involved. To successfully execute these demands; Australians that are taking part in these activities must use English language as an official and international language of communication and relations.
To conclude, the English language today, perform different functions in the world other than mere communication. The current world is technologically driven and connected in such a way that people from different walks of life can meet and interact at various capacities. Among the key areas in which English has been applied as a common language of interaction include business, media, law, education, and diplomacy. Australia is one of the English-speaking nations and which has experienced massive immigration from different parts of the world. It is due to the massive mixes of different languages in the region that Australians today need English language more than before.
Bolton, K. (2005). Where WE stand: Approaches, issues, and debate in world Englishes. World Englishes, 24 (1), 69-83.
Bruthiaux, P. (2002). Hold your courses: Language education, language choice, and economic development. TESOL Quarterly, 36 (3), 275-296.
Grin, F. (2001). English as economic value: Facts and fallacies. World Englishes, 20 (1), 65-78.