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Nicholas Ostler, "The Last Lingua Franca: English Until the Return of Babel"English | 2010-11-23 | ISBN: 0802717713 | 352 pages | EPUB, MOBI | 1.30 mb 1.74 mb English is the world's lingua franca-the most widely spoken language in human history.
Ostler predicts a soft landing for English: It will still be widely spoken, if no longer worldwide, sustained by America's continued power on the world stage.
But its decline will be both symbolic and significant, evidence of grand shifts in the cultural effects of empire.
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Simultaneously, new technologies will allow instant translation among major languages, enhacing the status of mother tongues and lessening the necessity for any future lingua franca.
And yet, as historian and linguist Nicholas Ostler persuasively argues, English will not only be displaced as the world's language in the not-distant future, it will be the last lingua franca, not replaced by another.