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September 17, 2013

Pakistan | Opinion

Pakistan: The politics of language teaching

teach-English-in-Pakistan.jpgThis opinion piece from a lecturer in English at Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University looks at the problems of outdated teaching methods and the continued perception of English as an imperialist language.

English Language is generally considered to be the legacy of British colonial rule in Pakistan and strangely, many political and religious leaders have time and again proposed the idea of doing away with English language and promote our own national language Urdu. They consider it to be the cultural invasion of Britain and America and all other English speaking countries in the world and make it a part of yet another of their conspiracy theories to contaminate the minds of Muslim youth with their literature and language.

What they fail to realize is that English is no more the Language of Britain as there are 750 millions of speakers of English(used as a foreign language) across the world as compared to 365 million speakers in Britain and all other English speaking countries, according to the British Council. English has grown in stature and importance with the advancement of Globalization, media and the internet. It is widely used in the world for business communication, political discourse and in academics. Roughly speaking, about 1428 books are daily published in the world, majority of which are written in English Language.

In Pakistan most of the people consider English to be a problem. One of the major hindrances in learning English is the traditional approach of teaching and unavailability of trained and qualified language teachers.

Read the full article from The Frontier Post.

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