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ID number:252364
Published: 05.05.2004.
Language: English
Level: College/University
Literature: 4 units
References: Not used

Actually, says Liz, what I do suffer from is curiosity. I want to know what really happened.
At the beginning. When human nature began. At the beginning of human time. And I know I’ll never know. But I can’t stop looking. It’s very frustrating. When occasionally it comes over me that I’ll never know, I can’t quite believe it. Surely, one day, I will find out?
Margaret Drabble, A natural curiosity

We humans have evolved into quite strange beings. Whatever happens in the future is unlikely to be any odder than what has already happened in the past. We differ from other animals in that we cook our food and wear clothes. But perhaps the most important distinguishing feature is human language. This extraordinary system allows us to communicate about anything whatsoever, whether it is present, absent, or even non-existent:
English has become the world’s global language. Around one in fife of the world’s population speaks English, and English has become the language of international commerce, popular culture and the Internet. Yet in the United Kingdom we seem to take English, and its unique role in the world, very much for granted. Hundreds of millions of people use English every day everywhere in the world, but may or may not succeed in understanding each other. Despite the successes of its standards form in many countries, the complex called “English” is immensely diverse – probably more diverse than any single language has ever been – and is likely to become even more so in the next century.
English can be defined as a language widely adopted for communication between two speakers whose native languages are different from each other’s and where one or both speakers are using it as a “ second” language, Many people living in the European Union, for example, frequently operate in English as well as their own languages. Like Latin in Europe in the Middle Ages. English seems to be one of the main languages of international communication, and even people who are not speakers of English often know words such as bank, chocolate, hamburger, computer, hospital, hot dog, hotel, piano, radio, taxi, restaurant, telephone, television. English has themselves borrowed many of these words from other languages, and speakers of Romance language are likely to have a number of words in common with English.…

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