Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Living and Learning Amid Cultural Diversity and Many Languages

It is easy to think of ‘Crossing Borders of Language’ as something that is needed only when making international visits but for most of the countries where we are living, the world has come to us.

With increasing mobility and the rising tides of migration we are encountering people still heavily shaped by their first culture and their thinking largely framed by their first language.

To truly relate and appreciate people in our multicultural communities it requires that we continue to learn about the culture and the languages of others.

Barack Obama recognizes this increasing need for when writing The Audacity of Hope he says:

“That’s not the future I want for my daughters. Their America will be more dizzying in its diversity, its culture more polyglot. My daughters will learn Spanish and be the better for it.”

Source: Barack Obama, The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream (Edinburgh, London, New York, Melbourne: Canongate, 2007), 268.

A review of this book is published at Reviewing Books and Movies.

Dr Geoff Pound

Image: “My daughters will learn Spanish and be the better for it.”