Why Did English Become the International Language?

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This video explores how English became the global lingua franca.Support Langfocus on Patreon My current Patrons include these fantastic people: Brandon Gonzalez, Pomax, Eric Garland, Andres Resendez Borgia, Adam Fitch, ShadowCrossZero, Zhiyuan 'George' Shi, Michael Arbagi, Trevor Lawrence, Felix, Felixx Ravestein, John Moffat, Auguste Fields, Guillermo Jimenez, Bennett Seacrist, Sidney Frattini Jr, Ruben Sanchez, Michael Cuomo, Brian Michalowski, Sebastian Langshaw, Lorraine Inez Lil, Don Sawyer, Scott Russell, Florian Breitwieser, Fiona de Visser, Raymond Thomas, divad, Justin Faist, Adam Vanderpluym, , Theosophagous, Rui Rizzi, Mike Forster, Christian Langreiter, Shawn MacIntyre, Dmitry Stillerman, Kristoffer Karlsson, Henri Saussure, James Lillis, Edmund McFarlane, Steely Dan Rather, Jens Aksel Takle, yasmine jaafar, Tryggurhavn, Benham Esfahbod, JC Edwards, Ashley Dieroff, Steve Decina, Thomas Mitchell, Mahmoud Hashemi, fatimahl, Kevin Law, David LeCount, Carl saloga, Edward Wilson, Mohammed A. Abahussain, Peter Nikitin, Fred, JL Bumgarner, Rob Hoskins, Thomas McCloud, Ian Smith, Nicholas Gentry, Brent Warner, Kevin J. Baron, Maurice Chou, Matthew C, Caio Fernandes, Suzanne Jacobs, Johann Goergen, Leo Barudi, Piotr Chmielowski, Rich Gerritzen, Mark Kemp, Éric Martin, Marco Antonio Barcellos Junior, Simon Blanchet, Sergios Tsakatikas, Bruno Filippi, Jeff Miller, Ulrike Baumann, Joel Mills, Alex Hanselka, Panot, Don Ross, Carl Bergquist, James and Amanda Sodering, and Robert (Bob) Dobbin.Music: "Marxist Arrow" by Twin Musicom.Outro music: "Gimme Five" by Twin Musicom.

EFL ESL English as a Second Language English language foreign language global language... language study linguist linguistics phrases polyglot travel

Abdou BGZ
I'm from Algeria and I learnt english because my father is a retired english teacher. 😎\nThe influence of english is taking over french here in Algeria.
Question of the day: \
Afrikaans would be a great lingua franca. Its probably the easiest language in terms of grammar and spelling
Albert B
Make Latin great again!
Anastasia Dunbar
5:07 ¡Nadie espera la inquisición española!
Anointed Steel
Ive been to Germany and a whole hell ton of them speak english, I think this is due to the occupation after World War 2, in my experience in france (Who don't like Americans very much in my experience) I feel like people could speak english well but declined conversation with me
Azer Efendizade
I hate it when someone says \
Billy Ma-gusta
5:07 Errr, we comment in English because you conduct your videos in English (and hence attract English-speaking viewers)?
Boiled Frog
Je parle français maintenant! vive la france!
Captain Haddock
Funfact; English is also the lingua franca in Star Wars
Carlos Hernandez
Just a heads up to the anglophones who complain about not being able to practice languages abroad because people will automatically respond in english. As an American I see where you're coming from, but I found that if you just lie and deny the ability to speak english they have no choice but to speak to you in their native language. (Lived in Germany as a teen and as soon as Germans would speak english to me I would just say in german that I didn't speak english and if they continued I'd start speaking spanish.) When I moved to France? I'd speak German or Spanish if they tried to speak english with me. I know it is dishonest but doing this allowed me to improve and profect my foriegn languages. Also, if you ONLY speak english fluently just make up a language. I've had friends do that and it works.
To all the people complaining about having to learn English spelling:\nDo you guys think that native speakers don't have to suffer through all that too?\nWe spend hours every day in school from the ages of five to eleven just for learning spelling and vocabulary and GRAMMAR! We don't have it any easier than second language learners, we just learn everything at an early age.\nI do realize that it takes a lot of effort to learn a language, trust me, but I just find it really hurtful when people assume that it was easy for you to master English. It's such a stupid language, I wish that the global lingua franca could have been a language that's actually cool.\nBut at least English doesn't really have cases or gendered nouns or whatever...
Darp mosh
#1: I am ethnically chinese and i was born in armerica. So that makes me bilingual. This means that I know people that speak english and chinese. The chinese speakers aren't very good at speaking english, with a little bit of gramatical error here and there.\n#2: Because I wanted to look cool, I prank called a Chinese phone shop and used english to communicate. Because this place in china doesn't receive a lot of foreign visitors, they were not very good at speaking english\n#3: Although people in China are speaking english, i still prefer speaking chinese with them
David Pusnik
about 96% of scientific articles being written in english, mayority of them are just translations of originals which were written in other languages.
Dawn Patterson
And we don't have gender on our nouns!!!
Dennis Flo
I really don't see any rival to english for atleast another 50 years.\n\nChinese is only in East Asia and 90% of their youth are learning english. They are strong, innovative & competative.\n\nSpanish is only in the americas and good to the ear no financial or military super power backing. A language dominance is more than just it's a beautiful language as most hispanic would say.
Desh 282
I'm very fortunate to be fluent in English and Russian\n\nIt helps me communicate to a large portion of the world population\n\nHowever there are some people that really love their language and culture and so rinds they choose to not talk to you in a foreign language because of that ...\n\nGerman to English tourists\nUkrainians to Russians
The English language is the easiest language in the world, I do not even know what I wrote but I understood everything because I saw this video and I learned immediately how to write this sentence. Amazing?
Elise Markey
I go on language exchange apps such as Tandem and HelloTalk because I am learning French (at intermediate level), Russian, Ukrainian and Japanese (at beginner level). From all of the people I've spoken to, pretty much everyone says they learn English in school. I've spoken to people in many countries such as France, one person from Mauritius, India, Ukraine, Russia, Morocco, etc. In the UK, I think most kids have either French, Spanish or sometimes German on their curriculum (I only learned French at school from ages 7/8 to 11). \n\nBut there are still a few English natives who learn other languages, me included, and I think there will always be people like us, even though most people in England are satisfied with just knowing English. I went to a modern languages talk that was held by my college on Tuesday and one of the instructors said that English natives who learn other languages are like gold dust.
Ethan Davis
Ma langue maternelle est l’anglais mais je préfère le français. À mon avis, la musique et les filmes sont meilleurs en français. La culture semble plus profonde étant donnée la philosophie, la poésie, la littérature et la gastronomie, etc. Cependant, la langue a les petites règles les plus bêtes!! But I’d say I feel uncomfortable using English in other countries sometimes. It feels strange to expect people to speak your language while in their homeland. I dislike the idea of any language becoming the sole lingua franca, but I suppose it was destined to happen at some point it history, regardless of the language itself. Of course I’m grateful that things are virtually always translated into my language, but I wish there could be a more neutral way of communicating with foreigners. And as Paul said, Esperanto just won’t become the international lingua franca... but that would be COOL AF
Ethen Jo
the pronounciation of English is chaos
I live in Brazil and practically no one speaks english here, everything is dubbed and quickly translated to Portuguese so some people just don't want to learn English.\nIn Brazil they teach English in school but it's very bad and you don't really learn much, just the verb \
Fiona Gregory
British Empire and Dutch also.
Flávio Viana Gomide
I am Brazilian and study English since I was 11. I think there are too many people that don't speak English specially the poorest which don't have enough money to afford an English course. There are English classes in public school, but they are not enough to learn well.
Footy is Everything
Its very easy to travel if you speak English
Freedom Warrior
Lets just all speak Klingon instead.
Gary Loor
Ginnie M
I'm from South Korea. The education system here places much importance on English. Almost any Korean will agree that in order to get into a prestigious college, mathematics, English, and Korean are the top three most important subjects. So people tend to equate English proficiency with academic excellence, and I think that puts even more pressure on students. TOEIC (Test Of English for International Communication) scores are not optional but mandatory for a majority of companies in Korea. So college graduates and job seekers spend a lot of time and money learning English. I have heard statements that English proficiency and standard of living go hand in hand, and that most well-off countries tend to have high English proficiency. However, I think the South Korean society is putting too much emphasis on English. Not everyone needs to speak English fluently, but everyone is spending so much time and money on it, which seems unnecessary in my opinion. And the English proficiency does not seem that high compared to the money this country spends.
The problem with the English language is that you have to memorize every sound of every word, because the pronunciation is so arbitrary, there is nothing that can give you a clue of how a word have to be pronounce, and there are so many word that sounds extremely alike, and that is a mayor obstacle for a non-native English speaker.
Goranko Ilić
It is true. Imperialism helped English to become an international language.
Houda Perla
No body takes English seriously where I live everybody seems to be okay with their French and that's the problem cause I spent 5 years studying it but for what if I'm not gonna be able use it then it was just a big waste of time \npc: I don't travel much
In Sweden almost everyone speaks English nearly fluently.
Joanna Hammond
To respond to your question as a native English speaker. I've visted a lot of North Africa, most of Europe and everywhere I've been they've understood English to some degree. At least enough to converse or complete a transaction.
Julien Besnard
I work as a receptionist in a hotel and a lot of our customers who don't speak the native language (French) start speaking to me directly in English even though I may already speak their native language. Many Spanish and Russians are the ones I've seen to use English.
the harderst time for a non-native English speaker is when it comes down to talk to a native British person. You're really starting to doubt if your proficiency level is as good as you thought it is. The Americans are much easier to understand
Kunzilya Yerdaulet
Comments are really interesting here :D
Laio Brum
It is funny because here in Brazil, most people do not speak english. But there is a trend that, if you are gay, the chances that you speak a good english are high! Funny, strange fact, but tottally true.
Let It Linger
Colonisation, then ?
Liam Baron
I'm good at learning languages and I find English easy, thought I still don't speak it perfectly. But in France, almost everyone understands English, almost everyone has at least some English vocabulary, but people don't do a lot of efforts to train their prononciation.\nWe learn English at school but I think the biggest part of my knowledge of English is due to internet. It trains me a lot.
I've been to many, many hostels in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa, and I've spoken to travelers from all continents and from many, many countries (including China). I'm fluent in English. And English was always the default language we all used when we communicated with each other. It was automatic. That, to me, shows how English is the behemoth lingua franca. Mandarin, Spanish, Arabic, French and Russian--the only credible competitors to English--are left way, way in the dust. You can use those languages in their respective spheres of influence, but you can't outside them. Only English works this way as a true lingua franca.
Luca Matei Pintilie
As a romanian moved in norway english has been my best friend. In romania you are lucky if you speak english, but in norway everyone knows.
Lucas Montenegro
It's good to have a language to communicate with people from all over the world. Today is this language is English, so be it. Whoever doesn't know how to speak it nowadays may get in trouble to find information about stuff. But I believe that there's a downside to this to the native english speakers, because everyone in the world who speaks english as a second language can have access to information and culture of the english speakers, but native english speakers may get themselves in a comfort zone thinking that they don't need to learn any other language and that leads them to close themselves to amazing stuff that other cultures have, because the language is the front door to the wonders of any culture.
Macho Protegido
You forgot to mention how much easier English is compared to German, Spanish, French or Russian. This is a relevant factor too.
Marcos Schleicher
I am brazilian and I speak english as a second language... I love it.
Marcus Leite
Agora vou escrever algo em Português nos comentários.
Max Buskirk
Lingua anglica?
Mekal Covic
Dieses Comment ist nicht auf Englisch
Melina Gomayz search
I cannot speak in English. But i can understand what you say in English. If you use easy word. I can understand it. I will improve my English. Thank you. Have a nice day.
Actually, I watch your videos because I can understand English very well, but unfortunately I can hardly speak it. I love your videos and I learn a lot! Greetings from Spain \u003c3
Michael D'Augustine
I visited Germany to practice my German. I met many Germans who refused to speak to me in German for the simple fact that they wanted to practice their English. So we made a deal. I would only speak German and they would only speak English. It was quite odd.
Michael McNamara
Ironically, *lingua franca* means *French language* LOL
I'm happy to be alive at this time where all of this globalization is happening and everything is changing
Patrick Lee
Japanese is the lingua franca of our universe. You don't believe it? Go watch Dragon Ball Z!!!
Paul Watson
Traveling in Denmark and Germany, I found that almost everyone spoke good English, especially the younger generation. I was quite impressed.
Native English speakers, i envy you very much, you live the best life in the Earth, you can say anything at overseas and people will understand you, every software is made for ya, every game, everything has English subtitles at first, im Russian so i just want to cry cause no one cares about our language. In hotels they can even repeat info on German but no one cares that half of tourists are Russians, the thing, that i born in Russia makes me useless person living in terrible conditions, and people from 1st world countries cant understand this and smiling everytime 😭
As a native speaker (I'm British), speaking English is an easy way to communicate with new people I meet on my travels. But the down side is that, even if you are determined to learn their language, foreigners will insist on speaking back at you in English! This can be a frustrating barrier to learning a foreign language. As a German language learner, I therefore found it necessarily to mask my English accent (not a bad idea anyway) and try very hard to sound like a native German speaker. The result was that many Germans then asked me \
Piyalak Nuchim
I'm in Ayutthaya, Thailand. A lot of foreign traveller visit here everyday. But not so many people could speak English for daily basis around here. But they actually could use a little of english for trading and negotiating to Travellers. But many could use that same level of communication in Mandarin, Japanese and maybe French too. Also, I found that even though most of the travellers could speak English, It's very often that French, Chinese and German people does not feel comfortable to speak English. And some doesn't understand English at all. French is the most language that I need to use translator app for help (I use English\u003c\u003eFrench instead of Thai\u003c\u003eFrench which is not possible to understand the result.) While people who native to Latin like Brazilian, Spanish that I was met \
I think my position makes it interesting to answer the question of the day:\nI am Egyptian, I live and work in Romania, I was married to a Romanian lady, so this means languages spoken with my ex spouse, family, coworkers and people on the street.\n- Between me and my ex(s): we spoke English, except occasional times we spoke Romanian in front of their families or friends. We almost never spoke in Arabic.\n- Between me and my coworkers: funnily we speak English, not only because it's easier for me but also we work in IT domain, where our work itself is in English (programming and development).\n- Between my ex(s) and my family: Broken English indeed. My father and sister speak English but not as fluent as I do, while my mother says only \
Ricardo Pereira de Abreu
Even if China becomes the dominant superpower in the future, I think English will continue as a lingua franca, because it's much easier to learn than chinese.
Robert Britton
English as the lingua Franca makes it hard for us English natives to learn other languages. If you're trying to learn French or Spanish and travel to a country where it is the first language, nobody will help you. They all want to speak to you in English because I want to practice English. In Spain it is almost rude. You can talk to them in Spanish and they understand every word but then they answer you in English usually very bad English) without even asking you if English is your native language.\nSo I am finding that non-english natives are making it difficult to learn other languages.\nI have found a solution that works sometimes. I tell the person that I only speak Spanish and Hungarian. Then they are willing to talk to you in Spanish because nobody speaks Hungarian anywhere
S Mosk1tol
I live in the middle of Russia and only few of my friends (or people I know) know English well enough to watch this video. Even those guys, who literally lives in the Internet, they know only a little bit of English words and usually cannot put it together to say something harder than Present Simple. It is sad, I can say. Some TV channels even call English \
*I posted a comment almost 2 years ago on another video called \
Salavat Khan
Ever notice that almost all the Hollywood films about ancient Romans. All the Roman nobles speak with snooty British Queen’s English accent. You would expect them to speak with a more latin accent.
Samuel H
Fun fact: German used to be used In medical fields.
Basically, the way to summarize this for people who don’t want to see the entire video. \n\nBritish Empire had a really big empire. When America became America, it became a superpower so boom boom English everywhere
Shikhar Srivastava
English is too big, especially in the scientific circle, if you are doing PhD it's an absolute must. What's the most interesting part is how different people use English, my flatmate was Italian and her boyfriend from Brazil, and both used English as the language medium with some borrowed words from other languages in the middle from Time to time. For me English dosent really 'belong' to the Americans or English anymore. I have been living in different countries for so long and using it so often that I almost feel like it's my native language! Everyone brings there own flavor to this language and which makes it even more beautiful :)
Snail Doom
Speaks German to a German\n\nGerman replies in English \n\nI throw myself into the Atlantic
Snowflakes Production
Im from Jakarta, Indonesia... i had 3 language class during my time in high school.. English, mandarin and japanese.. english is the most easy foreign language to learn.. like you said before i doubt it if mandarin become world language because quite hard to said mandarin, different tone.. different meaning..\nas i already live in work in middle east at Dubai and Doha.. english is the language i spoke everyday..\nwhere is my workplace filled with US, philipines, zimbabwe, kenya, thailand, india, nepal, krygiztan, egypt, turkey, italy and more connected by english language..
Aside from me, the people around me speak Russian, Hebrew, Arabic, Irish, Polish, Spanish, French Urdu, Hindi, Bangali, etc. \n\nThe sweet life of a guy living in Queens, New York.
SÁlv16 G.
I'm from Spain, and not a lot of people here speak English in reality. Which is sad because its super useful, you don't know how useful is it until you learn it. In my opinion, each person in the world should speak English. But, I would like if Esperanto becomes the international language
The Iraqi franchise
I am an Iraqi. In Iraq English is taught from class # 5 all the way to college graduation ( MANDATORY), but students don't interact with so many native speakers of English,(economic siege, war and people afraid in their houses, then no power, slow Internet, International companies advised not to go there...etc). So unless your work involves interacting with the American army there, it is like the physics that you just forget about after each test. Now I am an exception; I came to the US as an international student which is why my English looks better than the picture here. Yesterday, my neighbor- He's in Iraq- posted a photo on Facebook and wrote NOW LOOK for \
The Stammering Dunce
First of all, what's with 4:40?\n\nSecond, I am from Indonesia and it is very hard to fluent English speakers here. Not even all university graduates can speak the language. Heck, even many teachers who teach English at schools suck at the language they are supposedly be fluent in (the ones in my hometown at least). You better off learning English from Hollywood films.
I'm in France at the moment and I don't think many here speak English much. The French are really serious about their own language and culture. People who deal with tourists can speak it. Over the summer there were a lot of Americans here.
Vladimir Akhremenko
In Russia only 5% of all the people are able to hold the conversation in English. But the tendency is that more and more people start to learn it because they understand that it's very important. And English language had a great influence to modern Russian language. Now we use really a lot of English words in all the areas of life: business, medicine, sport, computers, etc.
Wako Baluh
it's difficult to speak English in China because many Chinese don't use the language.I was frustrated when I speak to them in English because they can't understand me when it happened that I had a connecting flight there. but when I said 'shit', someone said 'what'?
Walter Slaughter
Will Esperanto become the international lingua Franca?\n\n\n\n\n\nNope
As swede I and most people I know speak English almost fluently . When I first started traveling I was shocked that not all spoke English like all of us in Sweden were forced to learn in school. Even in European countries like France, they don't seem to speak English very well or choose to not use it. Shocking to me.
That 'Nope' hurts me 😭 My Esperanto!!!
English became the language of world banking, insurance and the international mercantile trade due to the British Empire. Prior to WW1 German,French and English were all equal in science but afterwards English Dominated. The western allied air-forces in WW2 trained hundreds of thousands of English speaking aircrew and after the war most commercial aircraft were from the US with a Britain a distant second. The Soviet empire being a closed society restricted Russian usage outside of it influence. The Higher education available within English speaking nations helped spread English to the elites of most countries.
Funny enough I am an Arab (Egyptian) yet whenever I speak with a Morrocan or Algerian we end up having to use English as their dialect is not understandable by me even though we supposidly speak same language.
edoardo barbieri
My father attended university in the 70’s and he took one of the first Russian courses made available at his university because he said that people back then assumed that everyone would be speaking either English or Russian which would be in line with some of the points you made
hebun hebun
You forgot the fact that it is and always been linuga franca of software developing. You did mention internet but it is not the same. Software developing was way before internet. There was a time when a developer who didin't actualy speak english developed software in english for the customers who didin''t speak english. Like a Korean developing software for Korean people in english.
it is a blessing and a curse to be a native speaker of English...most native speakers have no incentive to learn a second language and it is a fact that in the UK, USA, and Australia there are very few who not monolingual.
Everyone in Berlin spoke English. I didn't feel like I was in Germany LOL!
I do not speak English, or I shouldn't say I'm fluent. I started watching this channel in order to get extra practice and I must say it worked out well
English is the international language of aviation. I can fly anywhere in the world and not have to speak the language of the country I’m flying to... also inbound flights from any country must ask for clearance in ENGLISH!!! ;)
English words are dominant in the internet? Words like LOL, OMG, LMFAO....
You might agree that english is quite easy to learn, but learning English pronunciation is pain in the ass!
Paul, you forgot to mention that English grammar is by far easier than French, Mandarin or German. If I could tell you one great language to be the new international language it would definitely be Hungarian. (If difficulty doesn't count.)
Євген Матвєєв
I am Ukrainian !!! And I want to say that in Ukraine, especially among young people, recent trends in lerning English have grown significantly, about 30% of the population under 35 years old understands English at a basic level sufficient for elementary communication, 10% of them have a good level of knowledge of english . The real problem with the level of knowledge of English language in people that have more than 40 to 50 years old since they studied German at thear time, that is, until 1980 under the USSR, and did not lern English, and now they do not know any languages. p. s In Ukraine, all 100% population know Russian not worse than native Russians in Russia)))
Аалы Кыргыз
English became more popular in Kyrgyzstan then it was 10-20 years ago . More people study and travel overseas increasing a number of people learning the language. Though overall still only 1 out 100 people and that’s only among younger generation can support an intelligent conversation. Older generation doesn’t speak it at all . \nIt’s my own observation .
Димитър Дзимбов
и так думаешь что русский нигде не говорят?
we love British gentleman accent
In our country (the Philippines), some people around me & people who are calling me over the phone [Americans or even other nationalities in the US] would speak English very well as I do [since my job is a customer service representative], some not very well depending on exposure & willingness to learn. Despite of that, I will still enforce English as one of the most important languages aside from our native language.
French people don’t like speaking English
I don't think so Mandarin going to become the global lingua franca. 我不認為漢語會成為世界通用語言 :v
Japanese is the Lingua franca in anime world.If you want to live there and marry 2D waifus,you need to learn japanese.Your waifus never understand english