The topic below was seen in the Academic IELTS exam in Australia, June 2011.
General Training Writing Task 2
You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
Several languages die every year. Many people feel this is a positive trend and that a world with fewer languages promotes harmony and understanding between people. Analyze both sides of this argument and provide your opinion.
You should write at least 250 words.
Many languages around the world die every year, often replaced with more widely spoken dialects. Opinions as to whether this is a positive or negative trend are mixed. On one hand, people feel sharing a common language may help to encourage economical development in the world. However on the other hand, many feel the losing of languages is a negative trend that makes it increasingly difficult to trace humanity’s heritage. Both of these accounts will be examined before a conclusion is reached.
As many attest, the global adoption of a single language can do a lot in promoting economical development. For example, all export companies in China hire English speaking people to help them communicate with foreign buyers. The growth in trade that comes as a result of this effort to speak the world’s language does a lot to create jobs and industries around the world. Thus it can be understood why many people support this point of view.
However, other people would argue that the rapid reduction of the world’s languages is making it increasingly hard to trace where and how people evolved. For example, during colonial times many lesser spoken African languages were replaced with English, French and Dutch. This phenomenon has understandably caused major problems for modern day historians, as these old and forgotten languages render many of the recovered historical records and artifacts indecipherable.
After analyzing both sides of this argument, it is felt that more good comes from the global adoption of a single language than the preservation and practice of older languages. Thus, it is hope the world continues to move towards a single, standardized linguistic system.