46 comments on “ELF in my car! The lingua franca discussion rumbles on

  1. I can’t help but think that the emergence of ELF as something distinct is hampered by English continuing to be a native language for millions. Contrast this with the history of Latin, which for much of its time as an European lingua franca was nobody’s native tongue. When there are native speakers, there’s an argument about what is or isn’t correct/authentic, which goes away to some degree once the lingua franca becomes only a second language.

    • Hi Jason,

      thank you very much for your comments – about Latin, native-speakers etc.

      Maybe you are right…that native-speakers are kind of linguistic gatekeepers (which is Jennifer Jenkins’ argument often). But what happens when the number of non-native speakers far exceeds the number of NS? As is the case now. Does the language change?


      • “Correct” English depends not only on the speaker and country but the context. I am a rabbit breeder with contacts all over the world. My “rabbit dictionary” contains rabbit breeding terms in several languages including UK English and North American English. I once had the bizarre experience at a European rabbit show of speaking American English to a Belgian (learned his English in Canada) who was giving a simultaneous translation into French, while a Yorkshireman (with an accent so thick it defeated many of his fellow English) was translating into German for the rest of our multi-national group. The only bystanders not catered for were my fellow Brits, who were very confused, not because they didn’t understand, but because they felt that I had suddenly started using “incorrect” English.

      • The simple name English should apply to the English language of England. The international variety is Ancwe – Ancillary World English.

  2. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that, on the contrary, there are students who need it. For example, I teach adults who work for multinational companies and need to be able to understand different accents in order to do their jobs well. What I do is search the internet to find authentic material (for example, a video of a Russian speaking English), study, analyse it, identify the differences with British English and guide my student accordingly.

    • Hi Stavroula,

      that sounds great (finding authentic examples of NNS English). But what happens when students ask ‘is this correct?’ What do we say to them then?


      • I have a stock answer to that which is, ‘It’s not correct, but most NS would understand you. Perhaps they would think it sounds funny, but they probably wouldn’t know why.’ I use this answer esp. when students are using present perfect instead of past simple.

      • Thanks a lot for the comment.
        What I try to do is familiarize my Ss with the peculiarities of the language the NNS they have to work with use. This way they anticipate strange(wrong) pronuncuation, grammar and structure.However, I never omit to empasise correct language and engourage them to stick to that!

  3. Interesting blog Jeremy – but I think that the whether to teach ELF question only becomes “an issue” if we have a fairly traditional view of the syllabus (i.e. specified language items) which goes with an assumption that input can be equated with output. If however we question this and focus on a task-based syllabus then successful completion of the task becomes key and the language used is whatever is required to complete the task – with this approach ELF and variety can be more easily embraced. One more points, if I may – a bit of a plug! You and or your visitors might like to visit http://WWW.TESOLacademic.org to watch Jenny’ lecture on ELF (Keynotes 08-10) as well as Andy Kirkpatrick talking about World Englishes (Book authors & eds. 08-10).

    • Hi Huw,

      really pleased you came along – and your site is really really worth visiting. Of course.

      Yes, I am familiar with (and very comfortable with) the idea of task-based learning moulding our views of correctness etc. But there is nothing wrong with teaching some kind of a standard is there? If it is a properly functioning standard it will have international currency, surely.

      In other words, students need to be aware of diversity, but languages DO have grammar etc and a speaker needs to know that at some level?


  4. Very thought-provoking. I believe language learners should be exposed to as many ‘types’ of English as is possible/feasible in the time given so that they are able to communicate appropriately. I suspect that these learners would then understand “English” better than many native speakers who frequently only understand their own regional/national variety. I believe there will always be many types of English but that for the sake of (written) testing and teaching only a few standards will be accepted (GB/US/AUS, for example) – how else will we be able to have cross-border comparisons (such as the CEFR)? Unless we decide there is only one form of English possible (and who will create this one almighty form of ELF?) 😉
    Note the use of “I believe” – I’m no expert, just someone with an opinion.

    • Hi Louise,

      you may not be an expert (though you sound impressive to me), but I am sure you are right that students need to be exposed to different varieties.

      Nevertheless you raise the big question (for me), which is that learners need some standard to aim at. And, the question then is: what standard should that be?

      Still wrestling with that.


      • Doesn’t that decision (the standard to aim at) lie at least to some extent with the learners? For example, schools in the Toluca area and some sections of Mexico City are convinced BE is the way to go, and that shapes a lot of the things they do – from course book selection to school activities; in Northern Mexico, understandably, the vast majority prefers AmE. Learners in my neck of the woods just want to be able to communicate. Personally, I try to add as much variety as I can to my lessons but I must confess that in the main I tend towards American English.

  5. Thanks for the post.

    As much as every teacher has their own style and approach to conducting language lessons, it seems every teacher has their very own approach to (and version of) the actual language.

    No matter what reasonable steps we take to be more objective in advocating other ‘versions’ of the language in the classroom, we are surely always going to be subject to our (very) personal linguistic and cultural biases. When the learner inevitably asks for the teacher’s judgment on something, what they get will depend on exactly who the teacher is.

    • Hi David,

      if everyone has their own version of the language (every teacher, I mean), is there then any point in syllabuses at all? Can we ever say what is correct and what is not? Jennifer Jenkins points out that the 3rd person singular ‘s’ is not used by many people in NNS – NNS discourse. So should we teach it at all?

      Quite a question.


  6. Variety has always been the spice of life. The term ELF might imply, however, that someone out there is trying to cast a new form of language that has some characteristic shape and then impose it on us – or at least offer it as indispensable.

    Coursebooks now recognise varieties of English more than before. You can expect to hear some American, Australian, Canadian, you name it, speakers on coursebook CDs. Not only that. I have an example of one coursebook that introduced L2 speakers on their audios. What’s more is that they retained some mistakes in the scripts. I found that very useful as it helped me make students look at – or rather listen to – language critically.

    My belief as a teacher is that we should be teaching any particular variety of English, and then introduce – as it shows up- other varieties by comparison to the one we adopt.

      • I like this stance too. I don’t think there necessarily has to be ONE correct way of using English. And clearly you can’t be expected to know all varieties in great detail. I think we should raise our students’ awareness of varieties of English and, most importantly, ensure they are equipped to renegociate meaning if communication breaks down. Afterall, this is what often happens naturally between 2 native speakers when they have different accents/ dialects and they don’t quite understand each other.

        As for ELF- I personally cannot imagine one great ELF! Surely there would have to be many varieties of it. Right? In the meantime, I’m happy to teach according to a standardised variety of English (whichever that may be) whilst making sure that I include plenty of authentic texts from other varieties of English – including my own accent!


  7. “there are observable phenomena when L2 speakers get together”

    Yes. But, presumably, they all received instruction in a standard English (of whichever variety). The types of ‘errors’ produced are based on their L1 background AND on the nature of learning a standard English. Here’s the question: would the ‘observable phenomena’ be the same (i.e. in terms of dropped third person s, etc,) if the original input language was a non-standard EFL-based English? In other words, if students were exposed *only* to proficient L1 users of the L2 — in listening, grammar and reading — and who would therefore be providing a subtly different input, would these students develop the same observable phenomena as those who had access to a standard variety, or would a further pidginisation occur?

    Getting back to your question, I’m fond of Cook’s distinction between learner and user. As an goal of my pedagogy, I want my students to migrate from learner to user as early as possible. In aiming for this, I think that the (standard) variety of English given to them is of less importance than helping them develop their voice in their English.

    • Hello Jim,

      thank you very much for coming along – and in particular for reminding us of cook’s learner-user distinction.

      My own feeling is that ELF observers make a mistake when they cross over into teaching concerns, precisely because they are observing USERS, but learners need (especially at earlier levels) some standard to aim at – which they can (and will) later use in their own way.


  8. I think that there is a difference between receptive and productive use here: in terms of receptive use, people should ideally be exposed to as wide a range of ‘Englishes’ as they are likely to encounter in the context that they will be using the language. An example of this would be a student I had in Argentina who was distraught whenever he had to try to understand francophone English – but he worked for a Franco-German company, this was one of the ‘Englishes’ that he needed to be able to understand in his professional context – it would not have made sense to use classroom materials based on cut-glass RP.

    Productive use is a bit more complex – in terms of teaching, I would guess that we need to have some standard that we are leading people towards. Where the ELF debate is relevant is how close to that standard we need people to be – it is unlikely that most adult language learners will ever sound exactly like native speakers and where ‘errors’ are not affecting communication this might not be a problem. It does very much depend on the context in which it is likely to be used though.

    • Hi Phil,

      thanks very much for coming along and commenting – and your story of the Franco-phobic student is extremely interesting. Students need to learn what they NEED to learn, I guess.

      But what should we TEACH them? I guess it’s a standard of some kind. And then the teacher’s job is to decide when and at what stages (if any) to intervene for correctness etc.

      My own feeling is that student have a need to a standard to aim at. And they do need to know how good they are in comparison with this standard? So anything goes doesn’t go??

      Difficult stuff.


  9. I agree with philb81 that students need to be exposed to as much natural English as possible especially those likely to come into contact with native speakers through work, holiday or relocation.

    As a teacher I believe that it is necessary to start from an accepted standard, ie all students learn the basics correctly and then if they choose to deviate later when they are of a higher level that is their choice. If non-native speakers are speaking with other non-native speakers then they may be able to negotiate some ‘common features’ between themselves.
    I will, with the higher levels, always point to my perception of the more natural language in my experience.

    If the students have all learned the same basics then they should be able to communicate in speaking or writing with other non-native speakers with few problems. If we are going to ‘adopt’ a new language form then why does it have to be English at all? Why not one of the other major languages or even a borderless language like Esperanto?

    • Hi Bob,

      I have a lot of sympathy for what you are saying here. If ELF was just Esperanto I would not be interested at all. Real languages (English is one) are real and come from somewhere – not just cobbled together by people!

      I guess a big area that isn’t often touched on, is what the WRITTEN standard should look like – and what our attitudes to correctness in writing should be like. Is there a writing ELF? I wonder…


  10. It seems to me that the whole ELF vs Standard Language controversy is something of a false dichotomy: wouldn’t it make sense if students were provided with the resources to deal with both the Standard for cases where accuracy is important (formal writing comes to mind) and ELF-oriented skills for communication with non-natives?

    I am aware that the global spread of English is without precedent, but I sometimes wonder whether there are parallels to be drawn with the development of Latin. In that case, a ‘prestige’ variety remained more-or-less unchanged across countries and years, with vernacular varieties being used locally for day-to-day communication. Similarly, in my native Greek, ‘high’ and ‘low’ varieties co-existed for use in different domains. In such contexts, any language policy that catered just for one variety at the exclusion of the other would seem absurd. Or rather let me rephrase that: any language policy that prioritised one variety over the other would be transparently political in motivation.

    Coming back to ELF, the Standard, local vernacular Englishes and all that, what would make me happiest is a kind of critical language education that exposes learners to lots of different varieties of English, and at the same time sensitises them to the social and cultural implications of using one form rather than the other.

    Dear me, that came out to be longer than I had expected… But does it make sense?

    • Hello!

      you are of course completely right about different varieties of a language than any individual accesses. High and low Greek? I guess we have ‘high’ and ‘low’ English too – that is slightly more formal vs more regionalised informal English. But we have to teach something – especially(as you point out) for writing.

      So maybe we teach a standard (I say a ‘functioning’) variety for exam purposes etc, but bring in many varieties as students get more advanced, and adjust our accuracy demands (but accurate about what?!) depending on task and goals?


  11. Enjoyed this post. Thanks.

    I agree that research about ELF doesn’t necessarily add much to ELT outside of your very important point that “if you teach exclusively very British (or American, Singaporean , Irish, Jamaican, Australian etc) English which is not going to ‘travel’ then you’re not doing your students much of a service”.

    Providing SS with a diverse portfolio of English is an often over-looked, though necessary part of EFL in our modern world. In the end, though, it just really depends on how and with whom our SS will be using English. In general, I’d play the tune of user over learner as others mentioned above, and I’d rather give SS a basic swiss pocketknife with a couple of different tools than a sharp pairing knife good for only certain tasks… alas, culinary metaphors 😉

    • Hello Brad!

      the Swiss army knife approach to ELT. That sounds good!

      Yes, variety is the key, but (I am getting incredibly repetitive here)

      1 Is what we teach what they will use?

      2 Do students expect a standard to aim at? If so, what is our position on that?

      3 If we introduce variety – I mean varieties – what do we say about the differences between them? How do we stop it being an ‘anything goes’ kind of discussion?

      Questions! They keep me awake at night!


      • 1) I hope what they will use is what we teach (otherwise what’s the use ? And not that everything has to be about “usefulness”, but in the end it should definitely be higher up on the list of criteria)

        2) I would assume they do, and they are of course entitled to that. From there, I’d think it’s good to mix things up a bit, as you said, so they “can travel well”.

        3) How do we organiz(s)e the differences between those varieties ? I suppose with open-mindedness, and then ideas of more/less common.

        This question keeps me up at night too, but in a “wow ! wondering” sense. Language is chaotic and evolving and trying to strap it to a single standard has its effect. Subtle games we have to play with here. Thanks for the convo.

  12. I have to say, all possible relevant comments aside (that more experienced folk in the field will make), that I am simply pleased that ELF is now an accepted acronym.

    To be vaguely relevant (and possibly spoil above comment): English is always accepted according to the criteria of the teacher: if the class is conversation and I have a perfectly acceptable “International English” conversation going on, then who am I to question it? It is is Exam English then things will be controlled a little more. As an English (Northern) native the English I expose my Students to is varied, I stress that my Liverpudlian pronunciation of “inG” is not typical, that in some circumstances my centre’s name may be referred to with Different Spelling, that they should read articles from across the Atlantic and the Pacific and communicate with Whomsoever They Can in International English.

    En fin, the communication is more important in my classroom, except when they have to pass a specific exam – then it gets language-y*.

    (*I actively encourage my CPE students to invent words. Guess what? Their Use of English marks improve….)

    • Hi ‘Endeavour English’!

      that comment about your CPE students is very interesting indeed. It seems to suggest that being language-aware makes you better at language. Well that’s not too difficult an idea, and of course students ate that high level, well, different from say B1, B2s etc. Nevertheless that ‘awareness’ may be the key to this whole thing?


  13. Gloria E Montiel :

    Doesn’t that decision (the standard to aim at) lie at least to some extent with the learners? For example, schools in the Toluca area and some sections of Mexico City are convinced BE is the way to go, and that shapes a lot of the things they do – from course book selection to school activities; in Northern Mexico, understandably, the vast majority prefers AmE. Learners in my neck of the woods just want to be able to communicate. Personally, I try to add as much variety as I can to my lessons but I must confess that in the main I tend towards American English.

    Hi Gloria!

    Yes, it SHOULD depend on the students a lot, shouldn’t it. For example, it must be up to an individual learner to decide how much like a native speaker (whatever that is) they want to sound. And good teachers will of course introduce different varieties (that is, if they want their students to be good international Englishers.

    But if they want to pass exams? Ah, well now that changes everything, doesn’t it!


  14. I’m inclined to dismiss this as a load of (patronising) codswallop, because, in my experience of teaching “ESOL” over many years (classroom-based in Brazil, Morocco, Russia and other CIS, Mongolia and elsewhere; and online), learners of all ages and levels are by and large VERY eager to engage with and master the intricacies of grammar, syntax, vocabulary-building and pronunciation, i.e. of FORMAL language learning, often far beyond the wit of their teachers. (Many could recount examples of native English teachers obfuscating when asked about finer points of grammar, which they clearly hadn’t a clue about.) This is partly down to the high standard of language teaching in most non-English countries and the anti-intellectual regard with which such pursuits are dismissed in most English countries. In discussions, forums, mixed classes and in the most informal of corridor chatter, very often have I overheard learners spontaneously engaging with one another about those finer points, egging one another on towards what they regarded as correct English (however much we may argue among ourselves about what that means and however much we may patronise them).

    • Hi Bill P,

      I am in complete sympathy with your central point (I think) that we patronise students by suggesting that they do not think accuracy and correctness are important.

      Of course many of them do!

      The trick, of course, is to work out how to make that ‘work’ – so that we feed their acquisition powers whilst at the same time helping them with correctness.

      I think…


  15. Hi Jeremy,

    Thanks for the response. I too heard that BBC porgramme (by accident); perhaps I should say overheard. Although my finger had been seeking Radio 3, I stayed to listen and did find it interesting.

    You’re right, that was my central point, more or less. What troubles me is when it seems that a person is constructing a theory and then attempting to find the evidence to support it, a sort of anti-empiricism. So I guess it’s not just the patronisation; I do find myself wondering what the agenda is.


  16. As a language teacher from the expanding circle who is teaching GE at an American school, I feel comfortable and even elated teaching my students phonological and lexical features of American English. For starters, American English is the only variety I can teach confidently. Furthermore, emulating how native speakers speak can be so motivating. My students often ask: Teacher where did you learn English? I feel flattered when somebody asks me a similar question. The long and short of it is that whatever variety you choose to teach, your choice should not be an excuse to camouflage your linguistic imperfections and blind spots.

  17. Pingback: Harmer on ELF | efl-resource.com

  18. Andy Kirkspatrick, Fazard Sharifion – are pushing the agenda for a new model for teaching English as a second language. I disagree with them in so many areas. Firstly, although they claim that 80% of English communication is between non-English speakers it does not mean we should do away with L1 native speakers in terms of teaching English. As Harmer points out, most students welcome a native speaker variety and then adjust it as they see fit.Yes, variety is inevitable – however, to expect there to be no standard is a bridge too far. Most of the nonnative speakers outside of the inner and outer circles posited by Kachru have very low proficiency – not just against native varities but in terms of intelligibility. I reject this imperialistic debate that somehow native speakers are hijacking language acquistiion of non native speakers. Second language learners need some model by which to acquire English, and as long as that model is a recognised variety then it does not matter what the users of that variety want to do with it. In an Australian context, and i imagine other standard variety contexts people do not want some esoteric standard that claims to be all things to all people. The claiim that native speakers dominate the industry is simply not my experience, in fact at TAFE many teachers have English as their second or third language. The contention by Kirkspatrick that the “language taught by teachers does not exist” is a provocative one aimed at further pushing his agenda of a lingua franca being a provider of norms rather than dependent on norms’. So, are we to do away with traditional grammar and those who speak English as a first language and replace it with an esoteric model that in and of itself is imperialistic. The numbers used by Kirkspatrick and others to support their desire to do away with L1 varieties in the language classroom are not representative of the proficiency of most learners who still need a standard to support their English. There is also academic English to consider which needs to be coherent and cohesive to facilitate and accommodate the needs of second language learners. It seems counter intuitive that those who seek to call themselves linguists and describe language in this case language variation that they feel the need to prosribe a lingua franca model. Furthemore, the notion that among these millions of multilinguals we can pattern universals that will then determine this new paradigm of English language teaching based on their inter-language is not realistic. Language variation is fine but it has to be measured against some kind of norm or it would become imposssible to teach. People who have taught in the seventies may well think language teachers including those who speak English as their first language in 2012 are ignorant of variation. In fact most teachers I know embrace it without the need to label English teachers who are native speakers as being inept or teaching ‘a language that does not exist’. Bring on the variation but please include L1 teachers in the process. English belongs to no-one it belongs to everyone – and I really believe that teachers and students have moved on from the tired debate of native versus non-native speakers debate. Most classrooms i see embrace cultural diversity and teachers and students alike share variation all the time. Perhaps, the stereotypes of native speaker teachers need to be tempered with a little practicality. There is a place for non-native and native speakers if world Englishs are to thrive. As respective countries develop their own varieties – speakers can choose which one they want to embrace.

  19. I might add that English being spoken between two non-English speakers already defines a lingua franca. To then try to study a corpus and coddle together some paradigm among ALL second and foreign language learners can not possibly take into account all the variables involved. I mentioned previously that proficiency levels among the so-called eighty perecent of non-English background speakers varies enormously. Also, whilst on the theme of (unsurprising) variation there are age groups to consider, context, gender, educational background, linguistic background, norms, setting, genre, idiomatic usage, whether billingualism is equal, dormant, dominant, political, social, literary canons, established varieties – you start to see the complexity of the task.
    Yes, we need to try to look for patterns – however, not to create them based on a census of body corpus of research that seeks to find meaningful data, when at best it also is subject to variation. No overdose of expert references repeating the same thing, or quoting of figures of non-native speakers that are cherry picked and not explained, or fancy linguistic terminology will change the fact that the proposed lingua franca model is esperanto at best.
    I would also argue that most English speakers began their journey in a formal learning environment and any resultant interlanguage can be accommodation or convergence which does not necessarily equal how the non native speaker will communicate on every occasion. It is context dependent.
    There is so much more to debate – however, I will finish this contribution by saying Kirkspatrick and Professor Farzad in their push for a lingua franca, are trying to create a kind of Bahasa Indonesian whereby they try to control variability where i would argue it does not need to be packaged in order we understand better intercultural communication. Furthermore, they point out that we need to know for instance, what ‘family’, relationship, means in one varieity as opposed to another, the difference in idiomatic language, but to what ends – that is to say it does not warrant a lingua franca model. Most varieties have more in common than not. Most non-English speakers find a level of comfiture in standard Englishes. There is very little difference between American, New Zealand,
    Australian, British, Canadian, and even so-called outter circle varieties of Singlish and Manglish. If you are taught any of these varities you will have little difficulty in intercultural communication. What differenes there are do not warrant another layer of esperanto to bring the variation under control to offset the imperialistic standards. If for instance, we find that in Malaysia people say, ‘they are lovely people isn’t it’ which is different from another variety which changes the tag to ‘aren’t they’ they should not be seen as an attempt by one or the other variety to impose their linguistic will. The fact that so much esle is shared will allow either variety to adjust. Just because the odd idiom is not understood, or slang, does not need to be seen as a native speaker or standard variety no longer being relevant and not reflecting ‘real language use’ – it is variation – not a need to create a model lingua franca. Those countries which lie on the so-called expansive or what i would call developing English countries then we should allow them to develop their own variety, and not some concocted lingua franca that has evolved out of pre-conceived notions of a few self appointed language abiters who see everything a native speaker does as a slight on language acquistiion. The native speaker ‘ideology’ only damages native speakers if they are told, ‘they have to re-learn their own language’ – or that the variety they use and teach is not real language. This debate will not go away – and I say bring it on, the thing I like most is I am never bored by it and remain surprised what is argued by those who puport to decribe language.
    Yes, there are universals among standard varities and also among non-English speakers, both of which are evolving and enriching the other, and that mutual dependence is not created by seperating the two. Any patterns may well have eminated from standard varieties in the first place and as I say are dependent upon so many variables. No-one is saying that standard varieites should stifle, variation, those varieties have come about because of variation, not inspite of it. The notion that 400 million speakers should have to re-learn their own language is a deliberately provocative one, and is not helpful in encouraging world Englishes to find common ground. It is also unfair on the remaining six hundred milliion whose choice will be to learn an Esperanto coddled together lingua franca, or a variety of English established in their own country. Native speakers can offer non native speakers a lot, as I am sure they can when we learn their languages. As I said previosly the debate is counter-intuitive, as the only ones raising the notion of ‘dangerous lingua francas hunting in pairs’ are those who wish to intepret variation as some kind of linguistic revolt against those imperialist native speakers. We live in a global world and intercultural competency is developed by pragmatic approaches to English learning that can build on history not by erasing it.
    The risk is that by arguing native speakers are ‘stakeholders’ in the debate that they have more to lose ignores the possiblity that the lingua franca once again isolates those who have fought so hard to spread this great language of English, both teachers and students. Second language learners are not embracing standard models because they are ‘norm dependent’ rather because they can not be made to wait for the chattering classes of linguistic academics who wish to be on the right side of history and create new paradigms to make a name for themselves. Believe me English speakers (that is among established varities) have more in common than not, and variability does not require creolisation of some Lingua franca put together that ignores that variability. Standard Englishes have already harnessed the differences among second language speakers as new varieties emerge.

  20. I feel it depends very much on what Sts are learning English for. I do have learners whose sole wish is to speak very accurate English and although they are aware of the difficulty in achieving it, they are still very motivated towards their goal. on the other hand, there are learners whose objective is focused on intelligible communication and then ELF research and how it affects teaching / learning is doing a great favour for them. All in all, it all depends on what our learners need / want and then either ELF or non-ELF is out there to help teachers and learners in their language learning path.

  21. Hi, Jeremy! I have just started the DELTA Module 1 and ELF was in our first lesson. We listened to the program you mention in the blog and there was some discussion concerning what is/isn’t right in the group. We also talked about Kachru’s Inner/ Outer and Expanding circles concerning users of English (Kachru 1997). As a TEFL, I don’t feel we are going to ‘teach’ Ss wrong English, but rather make them aware of the differences going on with the language worldwide, and how they can make their own contributions as well. This is a video I came across a couple of years ago and guess translates quite well ‘who owns English’:



  22. ELF? How twee. i prefer Ancwe (Ancillary World English). ‘Ancillary’ because it is used for admin purposes by governments and ‘World’ because it is no observer of national boundaries.

  23. It has been suggested that the form of English to take as standard is not British English, which no longer has much connection to the written language, but Barbadian.

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