The Aspects of Bilingualism


The Aspects of Bilingualism

The Aspects of Bilingualism

The Aspects of Bilingualism

The Aspects of Bilingualism

Bilingualism refers to proficiency in the use of more than one language. Some linguistics has attempted the definitions of Bilingualism. But the satisfactory definition of Bilingualism has been put forward by Uriel Weinrich as follows:

“Bilingualism is the practice of using two languages simultaneously.”

Now we would bring into account the various aspects of Bilingualism, especially- the Types of Bilingualism, Purpose of Becoming a Bilingual, Domain or Scope of Bilingual and Consequences of Bilingualism as below:

Types of Bilinguals

The Bilinguals may be of three types, on the basis of the method of learning a second language as- Subordinate Bilingual, Co-ordinate Bilingual and Compound Bilingual. 

The Sub-ordinate Bilingual is a person who learns the second language through the grammar-translation method. He operates with a simple mechanism whereby the items of the first language are translated into the equivalent items of the second language. For example, a Sub-ordinate Bilingual of Hindi-English finds out the equivalent word for ‘kalam’ as ‘pen’ in English. Thus he always depends upon the translation method while functioning as a Bilingual. The Sub-ordinate Bilinguals are called Incipient Bilinguals.  Such Bilinguals obviously get minimal proficiency in the second language.

The Co-ordinate Bilingual is a person who operates with two separate semantic bases- one for the first language and the other for the second language. Thus, the Co-ordinate Bilingual does not take the procedure of item-to-item translation. He operates with two separate items (referents) and produces the matching linguistic signs in the two languages concerned. The intermediate learners of a second language can think in the second language as they think in their first language. They may be referred to as Partial Bilinguals.

The Compound Bilingual is a person who operates with a single semantic base and has complete control over the two linguistic codes. He can call up the items of the first language or second language without having to translate or without feeling that he is referring to two different items. The Compound Bilingual has native-like proficiency in two languages and feels equally at home in them.

Purpose of Becoming Bilingual

A Bilingual should have some apparent purpose for becoming so. The purpose of learning a second language may be as follows:

(i) For interacting formally and casually with the speakers of the second language. 

(ii) For purposes of higher education.

(iii) For getting access to both print and electronic media.

(iv) For professional and administrative purposes.

(v) For functioning as an ambassador.

(vi) For trade and commercial purposes.

(vii) For the purpose of getting access to the literature and culture of the second language. 

(viii) For the purpose of introducing the peer groups.

The Domains or Scope of Bilinguals

There are several scopes of Bilinguals with which the Bilinguals may go into contact and operate their functions. These domains or scopes are-

(i) Family,

(ii) Neighbourhoods,

(iii) School or any other educational institutes,

(iv) Trade and commerce,

(v) Government and administration, 

(vi) Workplace,

(vii) Religion etc.

The Consequences of Bilingualism

Becoming Bilingual we may have the following consequences, as-

(i) Learning a second language enhances a person’s linguistic repertoire.

(ii) It makes him more skilled and versatile in communication.

(iii) It makes a Bilingual more open-minded.

(iv) Bilingualism increases a person’s store of knowledge. It makes him cultivate tolerance and a sense of brotherhood. 0 0 0

N. B. This article entitled ‘The Aspects of Bilingualism’ originally belongs to the book ‘Essays on Linguistics‘ by Menonim Menonimus.

Books on Linguistics by M. Menonimus:

  1. A Brief History of the English Language
  2. Essays on Linguistics
  3. My Imageries
  4. Felicitous Expression: Some Examples
  5. Learners’ English Dictionary

Books of Composition by M. Menonimus:

  1. Advertisement Writing
  2. Amplification Writing
  3. Note Making
  4. Paragraph Writing
  5. Notice Writing
  6. Passage Comprehension
  7. The Art of Poster Writing
  8. The Art of Letter Writing
  9. Report Writing
  10. Story Writing
  11. Substance Writing
  12. School Essays Part-I
  13. School Essays Part-II
  14. School English Grammar Part-I
  15. School English Grammar Part-II..

Related Searches:

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I am Menonim Menonimus, a Philosopher & Writer.


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