The Growth and Importance of English as a Global Language
The definition of a global language, is a language which has been given a specific place within countries and communities around the world, even in places where there are very few native speakers of this language. Although English is not the most widely spoken language in the world in terms of the number of native speakers - there are many more native Chinese speakers than native English speakers - it is described as a 'global language' and Chinese is not. This is because there are few other communities in the world that give Chinese, be it Mandarin or Cantonese, a particular use or function, probably due to the fact that its alphabet is so different from that which is used in the majority of the rest of the world.
It is impossible to know exactly how many English speakers there are in the world, but according to estimates, there are more than 350 million native English speakers and more than 400 million speakers of English as a second, or foreign, language. …
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- The Growth and Importance of English as a Global Language
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