Mandarin Chinese as a bet for the future
More than 1.3 billion people are leading the world’s second largest economy (the first if we talk in terms of purchasing power). Therefore, learning Mandarin Chinese is becoming an alternative to English.
More children choose Mandarin as a second or third language, and increasingly adults dare to study Chinese, almost always with professional goals.
However, can Chinese defeat English?
The language of the future
To answer this question we need to look at many things: the number of speakers, the formation of these people, the sectors in which they work, rigidity and resilience of their culture and so on.
English as a tool
English has long been dominating international business and the vast majority of diplomatic relations as the language of a very strong hegemony with thousands of millions of speakers (including non-native) worldwide.
The English language is a very practical one sharing origins with many Latin languages. It is a very effective language as you can can communicate with about 1,000 words.
No offense to the language of Shakespeare, I want to stress its usefulness as a communication tool, praising its virtues and its spread. It is a language that destroys barriers and builds bridges.
Chinese as a mountain of wisdom
Unlike English, Chinese is from very different backgrounds. The Chinese characters have nothing to do with the Latin alphabet we use in the West. Although Chinese characters may be familiar to Korean and Japanese (these characters are part of the writing of both countries), the rest of Asia is also strange to the Chinese ideographic representation.
Although the Chinese culture is thousands of years of history and tradition, new generations of Chinese have very open minds and are eager to learn more and more. They are aware of the hegemony of English and are willing to learn the language. Moreover, they are learning rapidly.
Along with the economic development of China it is making a greater investment in education and training. That is why many Chinese are going abroad to continue their training. In addition, more and more international schools and kindergartens in China are increasing bilingualism among young Chinese, and this is more evident in the higher education institutions, with so many universities offering courses for students who want to enter the English Mandarin translation services sector.
So Chinese is not important?
In my opinion, Chinese will not surpass English as a communication tool for business or diplomacy. There are numerous reasons to justify this. However, it is clear that we can not ignore the growing influence of China in the international markets. Learning Mandarin Chinese is a sign of respect for the Chinese. It is a way to honor their culture and thousands of years of history.
Within a few years it will be unthinkable for anyone to move in international circles without even knowing how to say hello in Chinese.