Over the years, people worldwide have come across an inevitable reason to either
temporarily or permanently relocate from their original place to another. Definitely, despite
change being as good as rest, it carries some severe challenges that can affect an individual's
well-being. The challenges can be either social, economic, or even spiritual based on religious
beliefs. However, it essential to note that language barrier is the crucial propagator to all the
listed categories of challenges.
In line with Dorfman (2002), in “The nomads of language,” Colombians are one of the
historic communities that got hit hard by the language-related challenges. The migration of
Colombian natives was due to recurring natural calamities in their premises, plagues, and fleeing
from Civil wars. Nonetheless, intending to preserve their originality, Colombians went to
extremes of digging up their dead and carried them to their new settlements. However, taking
their dead never worked to maintain their language originality. Hence, just as any other
immigrant would do, Colombians had to opt for either being monolinguals or bilinguals to tackle
the rejection and assimilation that they faced for being new settlers.
Accounting for rejection and assimilation.
One of the most significant causes of self-belittlement is rejection. In language barriers,
people will not directly despise someone, but a sum-up of gradual events will depict the sense of
rejection. Due to the lack of a good understanding of another vernacular, people will tend to
segregate individuals out of their talks since they cannot contribute much. In turn, making it hard
for an individual to socialize easily, thus becoming a loner. Coherently, one can face emotional
challenges but lack anyone to share the tribulations; despite having in mind, a problem shared is
a problem half solved. Dorfman (2002) goes a step further, explaining that people can speak the
same language, but the originality may differ, resulting in rejection. Dorfman clarifies that a
person from Zaire can face rejection in Marseilles despite both countries being fond of French as
a common language simply because of a difference in speech originality.
Moreover, an individual in a foreign country can also face rejection by failing to secure a
job due to reasons based on language diversification's incapability. According to Dorfman
(2020), some individuals may be well qualified for job opportunities, but to their shock, they find
some interview requirements instructed in a language, they are not conversant. Hence, having
minimum chances of securing the job despite being a suitable elite. Others may be lucky to
secure the desired job. But afterward, they find employees using their local dialect in between
office conversations, making one feel unwanted since they cannot keep on requesting for
Still per Dorfman, (2002). Rejection can also occur in business activities such as trade.
Out of being monolingual, an individual gets limited to the number of clients you receive
compared to a bilingual individual. Making matters worse, being a monolingual entrepreneur in a
foreign country creates higher threats for your business to collapse since one cannot
communicate well with clients. Consequently, leading to a sense of rejection since other traders,
probably with lower goods, are making more profits only due to efficient communication with
On the other hand, immigrants face assimilation as a means of fitting in with their new
environment. Assimilation comes in handy with immigrants opting to be bilinguals since as
much as they need to fit into new social circles, they also feel the urge to retain their language.
To keep in touch with their previous friends back at home and grant them a sense of belonging (
Dorfman, 2002). Besides being bilingual, others go to the extent of being multilingual to fit in
more in diverse countries with different communication languages.
For assimilation, it tends to occur more decisively than rejection and tends to have a more
beneficial impact if embraced. One of the main factors that propagate assimilation via
bilingualism is intermarriages (Dorfman, 2002). Via pure love for each other, partners get
devoted to learning each other's language for easier communication in the relationship. Love
being a powerful force keeps the urge of bilingualism, and finally, partners get assimilated,
passing the skill of dual language to their offspring’s.
All the same, we can also account for bilingualism in a non-voluntary way. During world
wars, colonialists captured slaves to join their armies, hence forcefully learning a foreign
language (Dorfman, 2002). However, learning of the colonialists' language played a positive role
since it unified the armies and granted them solidarity in battle. Thus a majority surviving due to
the efficient following of instructions given in a common language during war.
Conclusion considering effects.
It is quite a disadvantage for monolinguals since most social, economic, and religious
activities get conducted in a different language in a foreign country. Hence, it becomes difficult
to cope with any aspect of life, be it academics, religion, or businesses, due to a lack of
understanding of the majority's spoken language. All the same, it is quite advisable for one to
side with either bilingualism or multilingualism since it is easy to fit in forums of a different
country despite being an immigrant. Moreover, just like the Colombians, an individual can
preserve their language less strenuously as they attain other achievements in a foreign land.
Dorfman, A. (2002). The nomads of language. The American Scholar, 71(1), 89-94.