One of the course that im currently studying goes by the name of ‘Nationalism and Imperialism’. Right now, im trying to understand the concept of a nation. While studying it,I came across something which i found holds absolutely true in today’s world. And this was thought by a man who lived in the 19th century!         ‘National languages will be increasingly confined to domestic use, and even there they will tend to be treated like an old piece of inherited family furniture, something that we treat with veneration even though it has not much practical use’.
This was said by Karl Kautsky
who was a socialist theoretician, by origin a Czech. Dosnt this hold absolutely true in today’s world?…..for me, it does and im sure it does for some of you too. Im from India and my national language is hindi, but hindi it is just for name, nothing else…..nobody speaks it nowdays….infact I myself have almost forgot how to form words in hindi….i cant write it properly though i can speak it….its been more than five years now since i last wrote something in hindi…..just yesterday, a new professor arrived in my class to give a lecture on one of my subjects….before even starting his lecture he asked all the hindi medium students (that is, those students who study in hindi rather than english) to raise their hands….a  few hands shot up and the professor announced  “to tell you that i will be explaining you the concepts in hindi will be a lie, because i simply cannot do that as all of my thought process is in english” …i mean, isnt this just what Karl Kautsky predicted?…..my national language and im sure there are many cases like mine, is already assigned to a domestic use….it is looked down upon even in my own country…..i cant remember anyone other than my grandmother who stressed on my learning of hindi and she did it perhaps because she grew up in the pre independence era……not even my parents have stressed on me learning hindi, infact,when i was a kid my mother used to scold me if i used a pure hindi word by chance instead of an english one……and even worse than hindi is the fate of my regional language….Im originally from a small hill station in India called Almora and my regional language is pahari, which, im sad to say ive never spoken nor written….cant even interact in that language with anyone of my region….not my fault, never got the time and moreover noone stressed on me learning it as it was simply of no use where i live…..both hindi and pahari are something that ive inherited like an old piece of family furniture, which has no practical use.
Infact, it was Kautsky’s prediction only that one of the major state languages would be transformed into a world language. English has become that global language. God bless his far sightedness!



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