Monday, October 19, 2009

Do as the Chinese

One day, before coming here, I accidentally stumbled upon a documentary on one of those 'learning' channels. It was about China's preparations before the world had its eye on them for the 2008 Olympics. One of the preparations is their English. Taxi drivers needed to pass English speaking exams if they wish to contribute during the summer Olympics. So did volunteers and the rest of China, for the matter. A segment of the show is about an English camp founded by a renowned lecturer in the country. I like his statement that goes something like this:

"We learn English not because we want to be subdued under them. We learn English because they are not ready to learn Mandarin...but we are!"

I think that statement is a very powerful one. English may be the universal language today but it is not the only language. Yes, to have English at both the tips of your fingers and tongues is important. But don't ever think that we have to put all the blame on ourselves and none on them as if they are that superior. The fact that most English-as-a-second-language speakers master more than two languages is a feat that we can be proud of.

Arrogant it may sound, but it is up to the person. If a person feels that native English speakers are the best in everything...then that is his wish. For me, I would ask the question "Why is it then that Asians still score much better in science and mathematics?" True, that when you're in their country you do as they do. But to feel inferior is wrong, if not plain ridiculous. You can survive here. Can they survive where you come from?



sulin said...

i love this post!!! Good inspirational post for someone who is still feeling inferior subconsciously till it affects my spoken English!

Anonymous said...



ChEsZa said...

Sulin! Me too! I guess almost all of us, eh. The post is just me trying to console myself too.