The centre for the development of baby Queens

Please forward this error screen to 77. People learning the English language around the world should not adopt the ‘Queen’s English’, a linguist said today. Dr Mario Saraceni, the centre for the development of baby Queens the University of Portsmouth, called on native English speakers to ‘give up their claim to be the guardians of the purest form of the language’.

He argued that the ways it has been used and changed by millions of people around the world are equally valid. Writing in the latest issue of the journal Changing English, he suggests the way English is taught to non-native speakers, but whose mother tongue is English, needs a dramatic change. He said: ‘It’s important the psychological umbilical cord linking English to its arbitrary centre in England is cut. The English are not the only legitimate owners of the language.

English is the most dominant language on the planet and though it is spoken widely in the western world, westerners are in the minority of English language speakers. For many around the world, the ability to speak English has become as important as knowing how to use a computer. But the myth of the idealised native speaker needs to be abandoned. How it is spoken by others should not be seen as second best. Dr Saraceni, of the School of Languages and Area Studies, said it was time English language teachers abroad took down posters of double-decker buses and Parliament Square from their classrooms and taught English in a purely local context. He said: ‘Critics might feel uncomfortable with what they see as a laissez-faire attitude but language use is not about getting closer to the ‘home’ of English, and it is not about bowing deferentially and self-consciously to the so-called superiority of the inner circle of the UK, US, Australia and New Zealand. Language use is fundamentally about mutual understanding.

According to Dr Saraceni, the widely-held view that English has spread around the world from its original birthplace in England can be challenged. He said: ‘The idea seems natural and unquestionable, but if you examine it closer it is patently untrue. It is impossible to identify any point in history or geography where the English language started – one can talk only of phases of development. The origins of English are not to be found in the idea of it spreading from the centre to the periphery, but in multiple, simultaneous origins. The concept of a single version of any language is always questionable. Dr Saraceni said that English had been ‘reincarnated’ throughout the world, including in Malaysia, India, China and Nigeria, and therefore England should not be seen as the linguistic ‘garden of Eden’ where the language was pure and perfect. The de-Anglicisation of English needs to take place primarily in classrooms and the ‘whole mystique of the native speaker and mother tongue should be quietly dropped from the linguist’s set of myths about the language’, he said.

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Gordon Ramsay claims he will try going VEGAN to the delight of those who avoid animal products after years of slamming the lifestyle – but is he being serious? Doesn’t take after her dad then! Queen Street West describes both the western branch of Queen Street, a major east-west thoroughfare, and a series of neighbourhoods or commercial districts, situated west of Yonge Street in downtown Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Queen Street was the cartographical baseline for the original east-west avenues of Toronto’s and York County’s grid pattern of major roads. Canadian broadcasting, music, fashion, performance, and the visual arts. Since the original survey in 1793 by Sir Alexander Aitkin, commissioned by Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe, Queen Street has had many names. For its first sixty years, many sections were referred to as Lot Street.

Queen West” is local vernacular which generally refers to the collection of neighbourhoods that have developed along and around the thoroughfare. Many of these were originally ethnically-based neighbourhoods. The earliest example from the mid-19th century was Claretown, an Irish immigrant enclave in the area of Queen Street West and Bathurst Street. Like other gentrified areas of Toronto, the original “Queen West” —the stretch between University Avenue and Spadina Avenue — is now lined with upscale boutiques, chain stores, restaurants, tattoo parlours and hair salons. Since the 19th century, Queen Street West at Yonge Street has been one of Toronto’s primary shopping destinations. Today, Eaton’s is gone, but the Toronto Eaton Centre still remains at the same location, one of Canada’s largest office and shopping complexes.