Importance of English
“We in our anger hatred against the British people should not throw away the baby (English) with the bath water (English people).”
In the history of English in India, we find that English has dominated the teaching learning programmed from beginning. Never was there any hatred or grudge against this language. It has been taught and learnt with affection and love. It has been definitely enjoyed a privileged position. The persons not studying it might have felt some sort of inferiority complex. There have been good teachers of this subject. Not only foreigners along but Indians as well some of them came out to be more sincere and dedicated to the teaching of this language. With them, a study of the subject was always a point of inspiration they have not only done their duties but in addition they have also contributed a lot.
It goes without saying that English is a language borrowed from six thousand miles away and it belongs to an entirely different nation.
But that dose not means that it has no relationship with us. Every human being is free to study any language. English is not only a national language of the Englishmen, it is an international language. It may be called the language of the world civilization. Its richness, its flexibility, its elegance, its dignity seem to have made it universally popular.
The different points explained here bellow show very clearly that English has its unique importance in our country. We can hardly bear dispensing with it from our mother land.
In our country, we have different states with different religion languages. People living in those states use their own languages for conversation, discussion etc. but English is a language which links them together. The leaders from different states meet sometimes formally over a common platform. By using this language, they can convey to one another. In the words of pt. Nehru,
“The language link is a grater link between us and English speaking people than any political link or common wealth link or anything else. It is so because we can see how their thoughts are functioning much more than in other European languages.”
Thus, we find that the use of English in our country has been unifying factor.
Pt Nehru once said, “If you push out English, does Hindi fully take its place? I hope it will. I am sure it will. But I wish to avoid the danger of one unifying factor being pushed out without another unifying factor fully taking its place. In that event, there will be a gap. The creation of any such gap must be avoided at all costs. It is this that leads me to the conclusion that English is like to have an important place in the foreseeable future.”
From educational point of view, English played a prominent role in the past. Before independence, it was the medium of instruction both at the school stage and the college stage higher education in science, medicine, engineering, technology, etc. even now advanced studies in those areas are not possible without the knowledge of English. Good books in all these subjects are available in English only. But Indian languages have not been developed enough to meet the demands of difficult subjects. If we decide to give up English altogether, we would cut ourselves off from stream of ever growing knowledge.
Role in trade, industry, and commerce:-
English plays an important role in the industrial and commercial life of correspondence is done mainly in English. National and international trade, development of industry and the working in commercial establishments take place in English. Efficiency and success in these fields depends upon an adequate of instruction and correspondences with others are mainly conducted through English medium.
As English is spoken and understood all over the globe, so it has got international importance. It is the first language in U.K, U.S.A, Canada, India, Africa, Russia, France, Pakistan, etc. the number of people speaking this language is about 350 million which is next to the Chinese language. Thus it is English and others language which can be serve the purpose of linking together people of different nations of the world. Chinese language confined to that country only whereas English is popular with people living in a different countries of the world. Naturally its popularity on the basis of its utility all over the globe determines its strength. It is English language which can boring greater and greater number of people in closer contacts with one another it helps every nation to study the culture and civilization of the other nation. It is through English that we can establish political, cultural, intellectual, and economic relations with the rest of the world.
F.G French in his book, “teaching English as an international language says: by accidents of history and by the rapid spread of industrial development, science and technology,
international trade and by something like an explosion in the speed and ease of travel and by all factors which have broken down frontiers and forced nations into closer interdependence English has become a world language. It is means of international communication: there is no other”
So English language is indispensable to us. Even mahatma Gandhi has to say, “English is a language of international commerce, it is the language of diplomacy and it contains many a rich literary treasure; it gives us an introduction to thought and culture.”
The following points indicate very clearly the international importance of English language:
It helps in international trade and trade and industry.
It leads to better understanding between the nations of the world.
The latest and up – to – date information in the fields of science and technology is available in English only.
A person knowing English stands opportunities of employment almost in every country.
It helps in origin people of different nations in closer contacts.
English helps in origin people of diverse cultures closer to each other. It also assists us for our inter-cultural understanding inside the country. It is through the medium of English that we are able to keep the different cultural groups of India united. In fact English has helped us in building new cultural traditions. It has also resulted in the process of modernization of Indian society.
The study of English culture has dispelled ignorance and superstitions from the minds of the Indian people. English language has imported the wealth of knowledge and experiences in India. To abolish it will be to shut the doors of western culture and civilization for Indian students. Thus from the cultural points of view English has great importance. It has become the next powerful vehicle of our thought and activity. It is, undoubtedly, a language of modern scientific culture.
Window on the world:-
The study of English by Indians serves the purpose of window. Just as we can peep through the window and see what is happening all around us. In the same way, by the study of English we can come to know the progress been made by the people of different nations will the world in the different areas of life F.G French rightly observed “ a traveler who can speak English will find some body who can understand him wherever he may go: anyone who can read English can keep in touch with the whole world without leaving his own house.”
English is playing an equally important role in the social life of Indian people. Majority of educated people use this language for correspondence. They find it more convenient to converse in English. It is the mean of social society. In the marriage parties or at the time of some school, ceremony, the invitations cards are mostly printed in English. In our daily conversation we use large number of English words. It has become such a habit with us that in our school speech we use English words and find dearth of words of our own languages.
English at the administrative level:-
English has been official language in our country for more than 150 years. Even now, this language has almost the same position in the offices of the country. No doubt some states strong efforts for developing their own regional languages and propagated its use in the offices. But the hard fact is that in majority cases. They have not been able to replace English almost every level administration we find that English is alone being used in the district courts, high courts and Supreme Court. Cases are presented in English so it remains a proved fact that English dominates in our country at the different level of administration.
Already known to idioms:-
In this age of competition one wants to excel another some people are interested in living more languages. The need to learn some foreign languages is there now the question arises that which foreign language should be learnt. English is a language already prevalent in our country since long. We have people who can teach this language and also we have English literature produced by our own country men. So instead of thinking about some other languages, it would better if we learn this language. We have a suitable climate for it already created in our country. Regarding English language pt. Nehru once said, “We know it a good deal and we have people who can teach it.”
Knowledge of English – a successful passport for employment:-
The knowledge of English provides a privileged position to a person. People with good knowledge of English are given preference for selection to a good post. The prospects of employment for a person knowing are bright anywhere whether India or abroad. S.K Chatter rightly says. “It (English) is, therefore, pre-eminently the language which opens to us prospects of employment at home and abroad and offers means of cultural communication with other parts of the world. Knowledge of English is an asset with any person post.”
A person with knowledge of English stands good chance of employment anywhere and everywhere in the world. F.G French rightly says in this connection – “ English is the rapidly becoming a world language it is the mother tongue of more than 200 million people and in addiction it spoken and read bye many millions of European, Chinese, Indian, Japanese, and south Africans as a second language.”
The Radhakrishnan commission emphasized; “English is the means of preventing our isolation from the world and we will act unwisely if we allow our selves to be enveloped in the folds of a dark curtain of ignorance. A sense of oneness of the world is in the ignorance. A sense of oneness of the world is in the making and control over the medium of expression which is more widespread and has a large reach than any of our languages today will be of imminence benefit to us.”
Thus we find the English plays quite an important in our national life. Almost from every angel, it is significant for us. In the past, it enjoyed privileged position in our country. Now also its position sin no way less as compared to other languages. In spite of the bare fact that as medium of instruction almost at all levels of living has been accepted as Govt. level but the hard fact means that more and more English medium schools are coming up and greater and grater number of people are becoming interested in those English medium schools. All this speaks clearly about the dominating position of English language in our country on this basis; we can calculative fore see that the future of English in our country will be as bright as ever.
A language for library:-
Whatever has been said in “Kothari education commission report” regarding the place of English is perfectly true because they have taken into consideration its present position in the country. The paint is that at present everybody is talking against this language. The conditions prevailing in the school are not favorable the politician, the parents and the public in general are saying rot about this language. Their inner desire is to uproot this language from the country. Many teachers are seen finding faults with the students. Some times they say that it is next to impossible to show good result in English. The authorities have also expressed the view that it would be difficult to progress without the knowledge of English. So the Kothari education commission has suggested that English should be made a library language in our country that way our scholars, who are doing advanced studies in the field of science, medicine, engineering, etc. will be able to consult library books. Advanced knowledge and excellent literature of the world be in the books which are in English medium. Indian readers must have at least as much knowledge of English of as if required to understand the books lying in the library. Without the study of English books, there can be every possibility of duplication in labor. Only the study of English book reveals the degree of advancement that has taken place so far in the world. Our scholars by the study of those books can acquaint themselves fully with the subject matter and they may think of going ahead in that direction or a new era of researches maybe found out by them.
Thus Kothari education commission has said that it is rather advisable to make it a library language. In fact, making English a library language in the country will be nothing short of accepting defeat in the teaching – learning of this language.
By library language, we mean that the carriers must study that much English which should help them to understand the subject matter. Contain in the library books, they may not become fluent speakers of the language. They must not even acquire the ability of writing nicely in correct English. But they must learn English which should insure them comprehension of the reading material. So ultimo aim is here is to teach reading. Now the questions arises whether reading cart be taught without giving practice. No it is not possible for all purposes, we must begin with speech practice in listening is needed – which will help in speaking. Speech is important for learning reading of the language. The ability to recognize the written symbols comes through continuous practice and for reading out those many symbols, speech is required. So by starting writhe speech, language should be learnt and ultimate aim should be reading with comprehension. Only then a person will be able to use English as a library language.
English is therefore an important language and it must be studied. Prof. Gokak has rightly observed that “It was in the English class form that the Indian library renaissance was born. A few words from Kothari education commission report are worth quoting, English as an important library language would pay vital role in higher education no student should be considered as an qualified for a degree, in particular, a master degree unless he has acquired a reasonable proficiency in English.”
So it is decided fact that English is an important library language if some people say that it is a difficult language and hence can not be taught well in our country, it is their weakness. As a teacher of English I am of opinion that English can be taught and it should be taught as living language in the country. If all teachers of English determine and fight against the bad situations, there will no reason why they will not able to succeed in this direction. The evolved approaches may be honest efforts. The English language can taught as it should be taught for its success and bright future in the country.
Sheth K.B Vakil high school.
Group members: - exam no.
Sipai Muhammad Faisal. 65
Sheth Vivek P. 64
Sheth Dikshit S. 63
Shah Mayur M. 62
Ahir hamir 25
Sheth Vivek P.