Dr Zana Ibrahim Talks About Implications of English as Second or Foreign Language

8 months ago

The Head of the English Language Department, Dr Zana Ibrahim, highlighted the impact of English as a second or foreign language on language policy, teaching and learning.


In a seminar to UKH staff, the head of English Department explained that “as a result of a century-long colonisation, the advent of communication technologies, and globalisation, English has spread around the world in such a way that no other language ever has.”


“Today, more people speak English as a second or foreign language in the Outer and Expanding Circles (Kachru, 1989) than those who speak it as a mother tongue.”


Whereas this new phenomenon might be viewed as both positive (easing cross-cultural communication) and negative (threat to other languages, cultures, and identities), he explained, this development warrants new perspectives on the status and role of English as a lingua franca including discussions of whose culture(s) we associate with English, and whose terms different speakers of English need to follow, and more candidly, who owns the language now.


He then spoke on this new reality and its implications for language policy, teaching, and learning.


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