The Ever-evolving Language
English is one of the most spoken languages in the world. It is the language of science, politics, business and tourism. Once you know English, you have an almost unlimited access to all kind of information. Therefore, in non-English speaking countries language schools promising their students fluency in English in half a year, three months, or even ten days of studying are flourishing. This creates a misleading image of any language, including English, being stationary. After all, if you can become a proficient English-speaker in ten days, you can just get it over with and move on with your life. In 2014, 13.3% of the American population was foreign born, and this number is estimated to be rising reaching 18.8 in 2060 (Colby and Ortman, 2015). For many of these people English is not a native language. So, it is important to educate them about the evolving nature of the language. Even more so for the native born Americans. If every one of them realises that English is constantly changing influenced by many factors, including other languages and cultures, they will become more tolerant towards other peoples’ heritage. This is why I chose the topic of the constantly evolving English language for the movie.
The central idea of the movie, or rather a series given the wide time spread it is planned to cover, is to demonstrate how English has been evolving and is going to do so in the future. It is a fiction series featuring a family of immortal people, the Langs. Throughout the first part of the series the audience travel through time with their favourite characters learning the history of English. Starting from the Old English era, the Langs speak the language of those early days, which can be reconstructed with “a fair degree of certainty about how most of the sounds were pronounced.” (Crystal, 18) The viewers will then witness which Latin words were borrowed by English, and sympathise with the Langs during the Viking invasion. Our characters then enter the Middle English period, when they acquire many French words. Shakespeare becomes a dear friend of the Langs. Together they are exploring the full expressive potential of the English language. Sin Lang, the father, joins the Royal Society participating in the development of the scientific English. Lex Lang, the mother, later on helps with writing one of the first English dictionaries. Together with Amy Lang, the daughter, we move to America to experience the divergence between British and American English. As soon as the Internet is invented, Amy reaches out to her family by the first e-mail. We see how the vocabulary of the Langs explodes with new words like ‘download’, ‘broadband’, ‘cyberspace’, as well the old ‘icon’ and ‘web’ with totally different meanings. In fact, most of the time they use acronyms like ‘AFK’, ‘FYI’, ‘ASAP’, ‘BTW’ to communicate.
The first part of the series will convince the viewers that in the past globalization, technological …