Did you know that monolinguals (people who can only speak one language) are a minority group in the world?
Out of the roughly 7 billion people on Earth, most of the global population know and are required to use at least 2 or 3 languages.
This is a difficult concept for a lot of monolingual English speakers to grasp. Many of these people complain about how difficult it is to speak a second language or use the excuse that they’re ‘not good at languages’ when in fact most people around the world speak more than one language.
When I studied Ancient Greek and Hebrew in college I was amazed to learn that for the average man or woman living in Palestine between 0 and 200 AD, it was common for them to know Aramaic (colloquial language), Hebrew (for religious reasons), Greek (for trade and international communication), Latin (for dealings with the ruling authorities) and various other languages of people in the wider region that they came in contact with.
Likewise, today in most countries around the world people usually have a local/tribal language or dialect, a standard or regional dialect, a religious language and an international language like English or French. It’s becoming increasingly vital for people everywhere to know English in order to use the Internet and engage with the rest of the world.
If you’re ever trying to convince yourself that you’re not good enough to learn another language just remember that if billions of other people can do it so can you.
This was written by Donovan Nagel.
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