What are languages?
BY VIJETHA D JOIS
Languages are powerful weapons, a mode of communication used to express our thoughts. It is a tool for humans communication and relationship building through speech and writing. Language is a vital part of human connection. Each and every person in this world has a curiosity to learn a language, as it is a necessity, too. We need to communicate to others to make them understand our needs. Approximately 6,500 languages are spoken in the world today. Everybody will be inspired to learn a particular language right from their birth. Even a baby has its own language to express its needs in a way a mother can understand. Later on, when the baby grows up with all its family members in the home, the language spoken at home is automatically adopted, and it becomes a common means of communication. It is so mesmerizing to know that evolution of language is so wonderful for every human being.
Why was I, as a student, was inspired to write this article on languages?
I am Vijetha D Jois of class six, studying in Auden Public School, Bengaluru, India. It was a hot, sunny day when I returned back home from school. After getting back, I freshened up myself, indulged in some snacks, and started doing my homework. Suddenly, there was a knock at the door. There was a postman, handing me a parcel for my father, who works as a localization project manager. I opened the parcel and saw an attractive magazine that completely drew my attention. I called my father immediately, who was still in his office, and asked him about the details of the magazine. My father said that this is MultiLingual magazine which is full of terms and articles, related to localization and language industries.
I opened the magazine and read a few articles. Just as my father said, I came across certain terminologies like “localization,” “translation management system,” and many more. I could not understand what these tools are and why are they are used in the language industry. I checked with my father for more information on these tools when he returned back home from his office. He saw my curiosity on the language part and explained to me in detail what these tools actually are and how are they used in his work. It is just like when I was a small kid and did not even know how to speak, but my parents used to guess what I actually was looking for at that point in time. These tools work in a similar manner: They assist in the translation process.
It was fun discussing all languages with my father who spends his days in the language industry. As we learn more languages, we can communicate with more and more people and win their hearts and minds when we talk to them. Also, languages help express our feelings and thoughts. As we all know, learning is a continuous process. Similarly, it is applicable to languages as well. There is no age limit to learning languages. The more languages we learn, the more useful it is in our life.
Learning languages is a very good activity for our brains. It is important to know other languages, as they open a new door to you. There are so many similar words that mean different in different languages. Every language is beautiful in its own way. Each has its own grammar, vocabulary, and way of speaking. It also has a variety of dialects depending on the places in which it is spoken. For example, the Spanish spoken in Spain is different from the Spanish spoken in Mexico. Similarly, Simplified Chinese (Mandarin) is different from Traditional Chinese (Cantonese). It is fun to learn the different meanings of the same word in different languages. I have a lot of friends in my school who speak a wide variety of languages. I always like to learn and try to speak to them in their own languages.
The easiest and most fun way to learn new languages is to travel to different places and explore their local language, food, and culture. We can relate their language to our mother tongue and soon get to know more languages easily. In modern times, there are a lot of tools and websites available to get to know different languages. Still, there is a special place for the traditional and local language speakers. For such people, language serves as a means of livelihood even today. They work as teachers and professors to teach their typical, native local language. They work as manual translators, editors, and publishers, content writers who literally sit and translate the content in their native language. They also write content to publish in the magazines. Some people also work as linguists who make grammatical corrections as required. Although there are plenty of tools available in the market, it always requires a human touch.
This is how I feel one can learn more languages. After speaking about all this with my father, I, too, want to pursue my career in my favorite language. I, too, made up my mind to join the language industry, which is always ongoing, as language is an essential key to life.