The plight of the British polyglot

Here is my first article published in the Guardian

We are a nation of monoglots, this we know all too well. Certainly, as a British-born and UK-educated university graduate in Spanish and Russian, with a smattering of other languages, my polyglotism is an enviable trait in this country.

Of course, the pervasive nature of English, much of it down to globalisation and Americanisation in recent years, has made the purpose of foreign-language learning somewhat redundant here. It is the unofficial business language and a default language for most people, wherever you are in the world. For those still interested in learning other languages, by virtue of nationality most other countries are light years ahead on the language learning front. For them English is a language of survival, whereas for us, foreign languages are not.

Published on 12-02-10. Read on here

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