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Discussion in 'Modern foreign languages' started by Vladimir, Mar 29, 2016.
Reading the comments under that article are proof positive that our education system has failed.
Or succeeded, depending on your viewpoint.
But let's keep politics for Opiniersonal, where it is also unwelcome, and stick to the topic here.
I say learning a language does not change fundamental beliefs, however mental those beliefs might be. It's a cynical ruse by a leader not fit to be left in charge of a flea circus, let alone a country!
Learning a language only highlights differences, which is a good thing, in a truly multicultural society. Of course 'multicultural' is the most cunning of weasel words where Europe is involved, so it doesn't count here.
What it can do is give you another perspective on the world, and an insight into how different cultures think. As such it has the potential to develop intercultural empathy and awareness.
If you are looking at people moving to another country with a wildly different culture to their own, then learning the language of the host country is a vital part of the process of acculturation.
Funnily, I believe that a language can change a whole lot of things about an individual.
This was noted by one of our sons when, aged about 8, he remarked to his younger brother Have you noticed how Dad is a different person when he talks in Spanish?
Very astute. And very true, a bilingual person is also a split personality in my experience.
Learning a language can absolutely change your culture in the sense of opening up whole new worlds of literature, film, theatre and ideas. If you choose to learn that language.
Under threat and obligation though, as suggested in this article? I doubt it.