Madagascar Drops English As An Official Language

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Madagascar has dropped English as an official language in the constitution, which was approved by voters in the November 2010 referendum.

Conventional wisdom suggests that English is becoming “the world’s second language,” a lingua franca that many forward—looking organizations are adopting it as a working language.

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Optimists about the spread of English as a global second language suggest it will enable collaboration and ease problem solving without threatening the survival of mother tongues.

Pointing to hundreds of thousands of Chinese children who learn English by shouting phrases back at teachers, the American entrepreneur Jay Walker offers the idea that English will be a language of economic opportunity for most speakers: they’ll work and think in their mother tongue, but English will allow them to communicate, share, and transact.

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