English – one of my favorite languages. Before I continue praising the language of the invaders of our ancestors, let me tell you that I am a multi-linguist. I can understand and speak, to some extent, Punjabi, Tamil and Marathi, whereas I’m considerably fluent in English, Hindi and Malayalam. Spanish is a language that is being taught to me in class, so there’s a minimal understanding of that.
Of all these languages, I find English the most expressive, the easiest and the most efficient language. Let me explain.
You can express yourself exceptionally if you have a basic knowledge of the language. Imagine you don’t know English and the only language you do know is your native tongue. You hit your toe on the edge of a table. Would you be able to express yourself in your native language, in front of children? Usage of words that would question family relations are often used in times like these. But even a minute knowledge of the English language would open your vocabulary to words like “Shit!!” or “Crap!” which is not only children friendly but also easier to think of.
My argument for English being the easiest language, in my opinion, has been contested. Here’s my argument – the English language has words for everything present on earth. While many other languages adapt words like “switch” and “cricket”, English has fewer and lesser obvious adaptations. True, it has adapted a lot of words over the years from various languages including but not limited to Latin, French and Hindi, but still has managed to make them common words. But the moment you hear “switch”, you understand and know that it is English. And words come easily to anybody with the slightest understanding of the language whereas unless you are a scholar of some kind, I’m sure that there are words of daily use that confuse you while using your native tongue.
Efficiency of a language can be measured by the ease of propagation, global awareness of the language and by the ease of conversation. English is taught to children right from their childhood and it is because of this that globalization is possible. Even the Indian constitution has the English language as an official language, only because propagating Hindi all over India was asking too much. Moreover, it is essential that people learn and understand the language the language not only because it is far more expressive, but it is also the global language. Even though Mandarin (Chinese) is the most spoken language, it is only due to the population and the inquisitiveness to learn a different language. It is undeniable that use of English is a necessity while traveling world-wide.
But my love for the language goes far past these trivial qualities. It is the exquisiteness of the language, the finesse with which one can express (for expression is the purpose of language) that captivates me. The flow with which a story can be told, the verses that can mean different things to different people at different times, the articulate nature of the language is that which attracts me.
Like it or not, English is here to stay and I’m going to love this language, the language with many accents, just as I love my coffee, my coffee with its many blends.