What is the future of language education? How would be the lives of our children, unless we teach them to understand each other in a better way.
Why is it so important for us to understand each other? Why can’t we just continue translating ideas instead of understand, fully understand the people we communicate with? Unfortunately, the answer is that we have no other choice. If we continue live in a world of self-isolation, the poor communication between cultures will soon escalate into conflicts. Where there is no open and clear communication, fear, anger and frustration always rise.
The path, as I see it, is Poor Communication -> Tension -> Conflict -> Violence.
Since violence, by its nature, leads to a rise of tension and reduce the ability to communicate in a peaceful way, we find it harder and harder to escape this routine. As any other Vicious circle, we find cultures (and people) acting in a self-perpetuating process which returns to its starting point with no improvement at all, from when it was begun. Add to that the amount of negative emotions leading itself to a change in the formal education system (education for hatred) and our chances to avoid further violence are becoming slimmer and slimmer.
This misfortune, not to say tragic, cultural phenomena, must stop! As much as we try our best, the world is not becoming a safer place for our children, so we should constantly search for better ways to live our lives. The shift must begin from within and I suggest to start it with language education as a bridge for peace and understanding.
Let us set our goals in peace and understanding and build bridges through the right education. An education system that emphasize the similarity between our cultures and there is no better way to do it but through language education. As I have said earlier, Language education must be free. The sad truth is that without proper language education, free language education, our chances for peace and understanding are slim.
The responsibility is ours. Each of us must choose between hope and violence. Don’t leave it to your leaders, they will always prefer to keep you partly uneducated to control you by blaming all your problems on ‘the enemy’. Is this the kind of the world your choose for your children? Choose wisely and choose hope!
“All we are saying is give peace a chance”