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Spanish As A Global Second Language

While the language spoken by the most people on the planet is Chinese, the language of business is currently English. Speakers of Mandarin and Cantonese look set to change this, especially with restrictions being relaxed on China’s infamous ‘one child’ policy. While these are both popular first languages, it is extremely common for speakers of other languages to learn Spanish. This essay seeks to explain why.

Latin American culture is extremely popular. It is comprised of lively dances, spicy foods beautiful costumes and amazing artwork. Even Spain’s Spanish comes with its own interesting history which a learner is likely to find warm and inviting. This makes it more appealing to students who would like to eventually immerse themselves in the language by visiting a Spanish speaking country.

Whereas Chinese is the official language of one or two countries, Spanish speaking countries can be found all over the world. Most of South America, some of the islands of the Caribbean and even a few countries in Africa list Spanish as their official language. This means that by learning it as a business person, you give yourself an advantage in negotiations and job opportunities in several different places.

In terms of ease of understanding, Spanish has an advantage over English and many other languages in that it is vowel heavy and just about everything is pronounced phonetically. Compare for instance the pronunciation of the words ‘bough’ and ‘through’ in English. To a non native speaker this could take years to learn and understand. In Spanish these sorts of problems do not occur and with a few lessons on the basic vowel sounds and the unfamiliar consonants, a newcomer to the language can pronounce most words well enough to be understood by a patient native speaker.

Even where students may feel more inclined to learn another language, Spanish is very frequently taught in schools. This may be due to its relatively simple spelling when compared to French, German or even English. This makes it easier for students than many other options.

Having any second language is a great way to become more of a global citizen, whether you choose Spanish or not. Some may even be able to add it to the list of languages they explore. The main idea is to use the knowledge to gain a better understanding of the world you live in and its people.

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