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The "Anglicization" of Europe


Lyzko 24 | 6,815
26 Aug 2019 #1
Stumbled across an op-ed piece in today's NYT with the title of the current post, in which the author, one Patricia Dannerman (?) bemoans
the gradual loss of language identity through the seeming 'stranglehold grip' (the author's words) of English across the entire continent.

She feels, and rightly so, I think, that in this world of buzzwords such as "cultural diversity", Europe should start by encouraging her
own rich tapestry of linguistics variety into the business-trade-tourism area once again, rather than blithely insist that English-ONLY
become her sole lingua franca.

If a visitor from abroad is sincerely confounded by being addressed in rapid-fire German at Berlin's major airport, then of course, all
staff should be (and in fact are) bilingual in at least fluent English.

However, to openly discourage non-natives from speaking in French, German, Italian etc. as the open battle cry from the international
economic community is to railroad a learned SECOND language through nearly every communication with a non-native interlocutor,
the author feels is downright foolish, and I would concur.

Curious as to how the above has affected Poland.
Miloslaw 6 | 2,585
26 Aug 2019 #2
Poland is not too different from the rest of Europe in this respect.
English is by default the second language in Europe.
But this has no effect at all on the native language of the host country.
Only France tried to ban English words from their own language and that failed miserably.
European languages adopt English words and phrases just as English adopts words and phrases from all over the world.
Languages evolve constantly.
I really do not see this as a problem.
The fact that English is becoming the global "lingua franca" can only be seen as being a good thing.
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
26 Aug 2019 #3
Good for whom, Milo?

If what is meant is that it is somehow ideal for you, a Brit, to travel, say, to visit a friend in Lithuania, and encounter a truly bilingual society, able to communicate effortlessly as well as effectively, in your mother tongue, I shall keep holding my breath, 'cuz as I explained to Rich, it ain't gonna happen, at least any time soon:-) A pipe dream, if indeed a desirable one.

English is a stop gap measure, a meta-lang, there as almost a last ditch attempt at communication when the native's first language fails and both parties find themselves somehow at an impass!

The journalist's pet peeve with Europe, having worked for the Paris office now for nearly ten years, is that foreigners, even those who know excellent French or German among other languages, are now being actually dissuaded from applying their hard-won language skills in a venue in which they are most needed in favor of the partner's so to speak "fluent" English. She simply believes that such is marginalizing national identity.

Where once, she recalls, an American in Paris, Berlin or Rome who really knew the local lingo was a highly sought and to be sure well-paid, commodity, today's Europe will typically cut corners with second instead of first best, if only in order to save money.
Miloslaw 6 | 2,585
26 Aug 2019 #4
Good for whom, Milo?

Good for everyone.
We have been here before, when Latin was the international language and later, to a degree French.
Eveyone benefits from having a second, common language.
I don't understand what problem you have with that.
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
26 Aug 2019 #5
Latin, later French, for a short time between the two World Wars, German, were treated with a certain aesthetic care and concern
for quality and correctness of expression most of all, qualities seemingly absent from Globish.

The language of Shakespeare has become a cesspool, the world's nurf ball, to be pummeled and played with any which way.
A similar fate never befell either Latin or French.
Miloslaw 6 | 2,585
26 Aug 2019 #6
The language of Shakespeare has become a cesspool

Not at all.
It is precisely why English has superceded all other languages.
It is easy to learn, very forgiving in how you can express yourself, even incorrectly, and still be understood and evolves......
No other language can compete.
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
26 Aug 2019 #7
If any language becomes a free-for-all, it runs the ineluctable risk of turning into a toy, rather remaining the tool for
which it was originally intended! Does a blunt lead pipe really replace a scalpel for more subtle operations?:-)

We've gone from corrective re-casts on US TV interviews during the '60's, with the likes of Jon Stevenson
gently re-phrasing a sloppy sentence with charm and aplomb to today's "Awhhh, close enough!", all within a space
of forty years or so.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,815
26 Aug 2019 #8
A similar fate never befell either Latin or French.

Translation: This didn't happen to Latin or French.

it runs the ineluctable risk of turning into a toy, rather remaining the tool for which it was originally intended!

You must be doing this high brow crap to p*ss some of us off. "Ineluctable"? How about inevitable? Or unavoidable? I lived in the US for 52 years and nobody ever used "ineluctable" in my presence. Not even once.

the tool for which it was originally intended!

Intended by whom? Who are those who "originally intended"? Guess what: nobody intended nothing.

Does a blunt lead pipe really replace a scalpel for more subtle operations

Are you smoking something illegal? Life has no subtle operations. In fact, life is f*cking blunt. Like: I love you. I hate you. You are fired. I have cancer. My wife left me. He died. I am broke.

"I love you. Would you marry me?" You make this more subtle and she will likely say, f*ck you.

Like: After thorough analysis, having considered all the positives and the negatives, I am inclined to view you as a suitable person to be my spouse for a period not yet determined.

That would be your version, Lyzko.
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
26 Aug 2019 #9
Again, is there a Jon Stevenson or a Walter Cronkite on the horizons today?
They made American English an undisguised pleasure drug every news day!
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
27 Aug 2019 #11
Quite happily for over twenty-five years.
My family agree with much of what I say, incidentally.
It may surprise you that my ideas have a following, and I don't mean Bernie, Liz or Joe.
Atch 17 | 2,934
27 Aug 2019 #12
the world's nurf ball, to be pummeled and played with any which way.

Have to agree, in relation to Polish anyway. There is a tremendous amount of "Ponglish" spoken here by younger Poles. The English of the older Poles who learned in PRL times may be somewhat limited and a bit overly formal and somewhat quaint at times, but at least it IS English!

The Ponglish thing is rampant in the world of IT and technology. Basically they take English words and terminology and Policize them, using Polish phonetics and applying Polish grammatical structures to them. A technology related sentence may contain verbs and nouns that could be translated into Polish, but instead of doing so they use the English form and Policize it. It's because it's a greater cognitive burden to divide the sentence into those words which do not have an obvious Polish equivalent and those which do. The brain would have to do a lot of switching, so instinctively the speaker makes it easier for themselves by applying the rules of their native language to the whole utterance. I predict that in time, some of these English verbs and nouns will replace the Polish ones completely and become true loan words, absorbed into the Polish language.
Ziemowit 12 | 3,614
27 Aug 2019 #13
Which words specificaly do you have in mind? I myself tend to avoid anglicisms in Polish; the only one I use is 'apgrejdować' (upgrade). At first T started to use it ironically, but then I found out ... there was no Polish equivalent for it!

Do you speak with Irish accent, Ms Atch?
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
27 Aug 2019 #14
Good for you, Ziemowit!

Anglicization is a cancer, furrowing her way into the marrow of national identity, creating an odd mishmash, neither Polish nor English.
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,815
27 Aug 2019 #15
Anglicization is a cancer,

People die from cancer. People prosper from English.
Cargo pants 1 | 135
28 Aug 2019 #16
lol you really think you are a cancer survivor?Wait....
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,815
28 Aug 2019 #17
Why do I have this feeling that the fart I blew a while back is following me?
Ziemowit 12 | 3,614
28 Aug 2019 #18
Anglicization is a cancer, furrowing her way into the marrow of national identity,

If there is too much influence of one language onto another, a sort of hybrid emerges. Hasn't English become such a hybrid with old French as a result of the Norman Conquest of 1066? Polish, however, has never achieved this level of hybridisation as English. There was a wave of Latin attacking Polish in the 17th century. Then there was a wave of French flooding Polish in the 18th century and next the wave of German in the 19th century. All these waves have been successfully repelled and only traces of them remain given the original amount that came in.

The influence of Latin or French affected mostly the higher classes of society, so they were relatively easy to annihilate. The German language wave was actively thought against by scientists and intellectuals with conscious effort made to replace German terms with Polish ones in technical and economic language. That effort has been largely successful.

What about English. We don't know yet, everything is still in statu nascendi (Latin term ;-).
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
28 Aug 2019 #19
@Rich, people CAN die easily from miscommunicated English, say, in some Third World doctor's office in which the staff confuse basic pronouns
such as "your test results" vs. "their test results" etc.. Are you kiddin' me, or what? Even in Northern Europe, I'd have my own person along to back up anything the physician said, were I not fluent in the language of the country:-)

@Ziemowit,

You already know that English has been referred to as Globish for many years now, Anglo-Creole, is also on the list.
The main complaint I have in terms of this entire conversation regarding the thread title itself, is that far too many Europeans especially confuse "communicating" in English, with "practicing" the language, much as any multi-lingual English native speaker abroad is practicing their foreign language skills.

Truth is, "bad" English has a sort of cool cache, I've always maintained, which "bad" German or "fractured" French simply don't.

It's rather like the Donald Trump, Curtis Sliwa effect of the Marlon Brandoesque wrong side of the tracks disregard for the aesthetics of established grammatical convention which tons of foreigners, particularly women, find absolutely the sexiest thing there is!
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,815
28 Aug 2019 #20
say, in some doctor's office in which the staff confuse basic pronouns

That's why I never go to the Third World sh*tholes. Nothing to see there and too many Ph.D's we so desperately need here.

At home, in the US, I select only white, American-born, American-educated 40+ male doctors. Also, no black male nurses will ever get close to me. To them, I am just a white Obama-hating racist who lived too long.
TheOther 5 | 3,891
28 Aug 2019 #21
...far too many Europeans especially confuse "communicating" in English, with "practicing" the language

Then learn the local language. I really hate it when native English speakers complain about foreigners who are willing to go the extra mile to help them.
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
28 Aug 2019 #22
I posted that for those who do bother to learn the local language, on more than a few occasions, are met by locals who prefer for whatever

reason to steam roller through in English rather than permitting the foreigner the opportunity of addressing the native in the LATTER'S language,
in nearly every case, a more effective tack towards achieving the same goal:-)
Joker 1 | 1,163
28 Aug 2019 #23
I really hate i

Is there anything you dont hate or complain about?
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
28 Aug 2019 #24
Joker, haven't you heard? Complaining is practically a national pastime in some places; it's not an activity, but a way of life!
LOL
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,815
28 Aug 2019 #25
I posted that for those who do bother to learn the local language,

You are deliberately ignoring the fact that when I am speaking English in Bulgaria or Poland, for example, the advantage is mine. Why should I give it up?

I was at the railroad station in Gdansk trying to buy a ticket. She was behind a glass window and the noise level was typical. I couldn't figure out what she was saying. Then, I switched to English and everything went fine because she had to slow down and use simple words.

No, I didn't go to Poland to discuss the concept of infinity and the sense of life with the locals.
Ironside 49 | 9,917
28 Aug 2019 #26
she had to

she had to do nothing, she was nice to you, she could say I don't know what you are jabbering about tell mewhat you wnat or hire a translator,

@Lyzko wake up, about 20% of a native English speakers are to use it very well. All the rest just gets by.... you live in a fantasy land.
pawian 161 | 9,971
28 Aug 2019 #27
she could say I don't know what you are jabbering about

And what about Polish traditional hospitality? Did you know there is such a Polish saying: Guest at home, God at home? If not, it is time to learn it, Mr Expat.
Ironside 49 | 9,917
28 Aug 2019 #28
Guest

We are talking about RM he is not a guest but a pest.
pawian 161 | 9,971
28 Aug 2019 #29
In your sick mind.

But the situation was at the railway station where you suggest the lady behind the counter should have refused him service for not speaking Polish.

Again, I am asking you- - do you know the rules of Polish hospitality or not?
OP Lyzko 24 | 6,815
28 Aug 2019 #30
Apparently, Ironside, you're still asleep!

The bulk of Europeans, particularly younger Europeans, use English in a sloppy manner.
This is bad both for business, in the end, for life.


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