The English Language and Communicability: The Nigerian Experience
AbstractNigeria is blessed with many indigenous languages that are mainly used in communication, including English as her second language. These languages had never remained static; they develop simultaneously with the developing nature of Nigeria. Communication therefore dominates the various functions performed by language in different societies. Through communication, language helps to ensure social cohesion. Against this background, the importance of language is often assessed from its ability to solve the complex human interactive possibilities. Even in multilingual society where languages co-exist, some languages attract higher recognitions than others, arising from possibility of use in the ever elastic human transactions. Similarly, standardization is a prime index in according a language respect and recognition. Although the history and status of English language in Nigeria may no longer form a new discourse, the extent and manner it has responded to the dynamics in the Nigerian society form the thrust of this paper. It examines the state of the language against the background of current influences like telecom messaging, peer group language use, with emphasis on intelligibility. This paper therefore submits that given the noticeable effects of these influences, Nigeria is heading to a state of great linguistic confusion in the name of language development.
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