THE MEDITATIVE ROLE OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE IN MULTILINGUAL NIGERIA

Grace Ikechukwu, Ifeoma Abana (PhD)

Abstract


Nigeria is a heterogeneous set up with plural ethnic groups characterized by diversity of languages. Multilingualism is undoubtedly a generator  of too many resultant difficulties in communication, especially where no standard national language is established. It is known that the country has over 450 different languages within her geo-polity. Unfortunately, none of these languages is yet considered to be integrative worthy. This is as a result of ethnic and political prejudice, which characterizes contemporary neo-colonial Nigeria. The sixty-four thousand- dollar question is, how can the various ethnic groups and diverse cultural groups establish a common understanding by means of any possible inter and intra ethnic communications and media? English, therefore, comes to save the day. The entrenchment of English in Nigeria polity helps to overcome the problem of this interethnic communication. This paper, therefore addresses issues in Nigeria by exploring the unifying and meditative significance of the English language in Nigeria. It is also concerned with the exploration of the English language as a “Messiah” in the face of the multiplied Nigeria. It finally acknowledges the undeniable role of English in Nigeria.

Keywords


English language, multilingualism, domestication, communication, unity

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