Band 9 essay sample: Can we allow languages to die?

Topic

Every year several languages die out. Some people think that this is not important because life will be easier if there are fewer languages in the world.

To what extent do you agree or disagree with this opinion.

Sample essay

Language is the means of communication. There is no denying the fact the life would be a whole lot easier if we all spoke the same language. However, this does not mean that we should let languages die.

In the past, language barriers used to prevent people living in one part of the world from communicating with people living in another part. Now thanks to the availability of better modes of transport people are traveling to other countries and continents. This has also led to the massive adoption of languages spoken in the developed world. English is a good example. People coming from developing countries are trying hard to learn English because it opens many doors. This is definitely a positive development.

On the flip side, the world wide adoption of a couple of languages that have a large number of speakers has led to the death of several less popular languages. These are mainly the languages spoken in the developing world. Some of them don’t have a large number of speakers. Others do have enough speakers, but learning or speaking them do not improve a person’s career prospects and hence they do not enjoy acceptance even in their countries.

For example, most parents in India now send their children to English medium schools because English enhances their employability. Unfortunately, this is leading to the death of several local languages. When a language dies, the culture associated with it is also dying. This may have far reaching consequences. When communities adopt foreign languages and allow their mother tongues to die, they are actually allowing their culture and legacy to die. In the process, they will also lose their identity.

To conclude, the death of local languages is an alarming development. There is no harm in adopting a popular language like English. It will make communication easier and improve our lives. However, we should still keep our mother tongues alive by using them within our country and community.

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