Why have English become international language?

"Why have English become international language?"

I had to be asked this question and asked myself about this when i was college student. There are many amazing and suprising answers i recieved. All of them make me love English more and more.


What about you? What is your answer?


Jan 6, 2016 3:30 AM
Comments · 6

Great Britain was once said to be "the empire on which the sun never sets" which was previously used to describe Spain (only in the Spanish language, of course ;) ) and it was fitting because the English-speaking British Empire was very expansive throughout the 1700s to 1900s. In 1919, Great Britain had a claim to territory on all 7 continents!

Many of those colonies have gained their independence since those times, but in many cases English is still the language used by their inhabitants. And at least some of the "staying power" of the English language into the 21st century has been a result of some of these countries remaining hubs of economics and politcal activity. 

Certainly, I think English is a very useful language to know and I'm glad I know it, but having been born and raised in the USA, I am somewhat envious of people who speak languages other than English fluently because I can only communicate with other people who speak English (for now!). I'm hoping through italki and other resources, I can learn other languages to make friends with people who may not speak English!

January 6, 2016

England had numerous colonies around the world; that's why English has a significant influence worldwide.

January 6, 2016

Like others have said, British colonialism is the greatest cause of English's status as the <em>lingua franca</em>. Since about mid-20th century, however, I think the political and economic status of the U.S. has solidified English as the most influential language in the world. Currently, I think the greatest reason for English's appeal is the worldwide popularity of Hollywood movies, U.S. and UK musicians/bands, and other aspects of U.S. culture.

January 6, 2016

I watched an BBC documentary film about world history

this link may help you understand why English become so influential :)

BTW, if the Emperor Yongle of Ming dynasty in Chinese history had had a longer life, everybody in the world today may just need to learn to speak Chinese instead of English!  (Just kidding :3  ) 

January 6, 2016

I don't think that British colonialism has much to do with the English language. The true reason, from my point of view, is that the society created first on the British soil and later in the United States allowed for the technological boom. Most of the other countries failed with this (and are still failing to properly stimulate their technological development).


Computers speak English and it is this fact, which eventually may lead to the extinction of all other languages, wish we this or not.

January 6, 2016
Show more