The following paper introduces us to the terms of global languages and globalization; it also shows us how global languages spread and why they are needed.
Key words: lingua franca, globalization, language
Language and Globalization
Since this paper is going to focus on the problem of language globalization I feel we should be properly introduced first to the term of lingua franca or otherwise known as a global language.
The term lingua franca (plural lingue franche or lingua francas) is used to refer to any form of language that serves as a means of communication among different language speakers, for example, Swahili in East and Central Africa or English worldwide. The terms ‘common language’ and ‘auxiliary language’ are also used to refer to such a language. (Mesthire, 2001: 503)
The term itself originates from the French language, it originally referred to a vernacular Romance tongue spoken along the Mediterranean coast between Marseilles and Genoa, the language was later used by Crusaders – who spoke different languages – and was mixed with Arabic, Greek, Spanish and other element. In time the Crusader language became extinct but the name lingua franca survived as a general term of any comparable language. (Corré, 2000)
Lingua franca was defined in the 1953 UNESCO Conference on Vernacular Languages as a language which is used habitually by people whose, mother tongues are different in order to facilitate communication between them (UNESCO 1953). This definition applies also to pidgins and Creoles, perhaps more to Creoles because of the requirement of habitualness.
Furthermore, to understand why lingua francas are spreading so fast and wide we need to understand the term of globalization. First of all one might ask what is a global language? A language achieves a global status when it develops a special role that is recognized in other countries. This might seem like stating what we already know, but in fact it is not, a...