English speaking countries
Leaving Examination Topic #1
- pojem ESC
- pojem Commonwealth + rozdíly
- historie a současnost Commonwealthu
- angličtina - její vývoj, původ slovní zásoby, kolik lidí mluví anglicky
- příklady slov přejatých z jiných jazyků
- instituce používající AJ jako úřední jazyk
- 5 typů angličtiny
- BE a AE a její rozdíly ve výslovnosti, spellingu, slovní zásobě a mluvnici
English speaking countries:
- the United Kingdom
- the U.S.A.
- New Zealand
In these countries there is English used as a mother tongue, official or the second language. For approximately 400 million people it is their mother tongue. However, about 2 billion people use English - it's one third people on the Earth!
The Commonwealth is an association of the U. K. and its former colonies (they cooperate in culture, sport, commerce and others) - the U.S.A. and Ireland do not belong to the Commonwealth!
- the USA was not a part of the British Empire (the ancestor of the Commonwealth)
- Ireland became independent because there existed many differences and problems in the relationship between the English and Irish (e.g. during so called Potato Famine in the 19th century)
English is also the official language of many world institutions and organizations:
- UN = United Nations
- FAO = Food and Agriculture Organization
- IBRD = International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (known as "World Bank")
- IMF = International Monetary Fund
- UNESCO = United Nations Educational
- Scientific and Cultural Organization
- WHO = World Health Organization
- OPEC = Organization of Petroleum-Exporting countries
- EU = European Union
- OECD = Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
- NATO = North Atlantic Treaty Organization
The United Nations
It is an organization of independent countries. These countries have joined together to work for world peace and against poverty and injustice. The United Nations was formed on 24 October 1945 with 51 Member countries (including the Czech Republic). Today, the UN has 188 Member countries. The main aims and purposes of the UN are:
- to keep peace throughout the world
- to develop friendly relations among nations
- to help improve living conditions of poor people and encourage respect for each other's rights and freedoms
It has six official languages – Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.
There are five main types of English – British, American, Australian, Indian (Asian), and African. Even in the various regiosn of the United Kingdom people speak different English - in London it is Cockney, differences are in Manchester, Liverpool, Scotland and in other parts. British and American English have many differences:
- grammar: American English does not use Present Perfect so much (they use Past instead), some irregular verbs (LEARN, BURN, SPOIL..) are in AE regular (LEARNED, BURNED, SPOILED..)
- spelling: travelling/travelled (BE) - traveling /traveled (AE), colour - color, centre/theatre - center/theater
- pronunciation: New York (BE - nju jork) - New York (AE - nu jark); soft and hard N - the same rule for consonants D and T. Not/block/cross/stop(BE - not..) (AE - nat,..)
- vocabulary: flat (BE) - apartment (AE), pavement - sidewalk, road - pavement (vozovka)
English was and is influenced by many languages - in origin it is Germanic language. The first tribes which settled the area were Celts, then Romans (strata via – street), Angles, Saxons, or Vikings. This period is the period of Old English.
An important event which influenced the English language was the Battle at Hastings – Normans – who spoke French - came to England and that is why many words are of French origin. French and English were mixing together for almost two hundred years and it was the beginning of Middle English. The first author writing in Middle English was G. Chaucer (Canterbury Tales).
But English took many words from many other languages:
- Arabic: admiral, algebra, mattress
- Spanish: mosquito, cigar, canyon
- Italian: piano, violin, spaghetti
- Dutch: yacht, boss, deck
- Hindi: pyjamas, shampoo, bungalow
- Turkish: yoghurt, kiosk
- Japanese: tycoon, karate
- Hungarian: coach, paprika
- Russian: vodka, sputnik, glasnost
- Czech: robot, semtex; in US English: kolache, kielbasa
- Finnish: sauna
- Australian Aborigine: kangaroo, boomerang
- Modern French: rendezvous, café
- Modern German: kindergarten
- London Cockney English: loaf of bread = head, dickey dirt = shirt, Hampstead Heath = teeth, I suppose = nose, mince pies = eyes, plates of meet = feet, round the houses = trousers etc.
Britain's overseas relations
The British Empire in 1919 was at its greatest extent and most powerful. About 25% of the world’s population lived under British rule and over a quarter of the land in the world belonged to Britain. It was said that it was an empire on which the sun never sets. With the loss of empire went a loss of a power and status after WWII. Despite the loss of power on the world stage, some small remnants remain. The inhabitants of Gibraltar, St. Helena, the Ascension Islands, the Falklands and Belize have all wished to continue with the imperial arrangement (they were afraid of being swallowed up by their nearest neighbours). In 1982 Britain spent hundreds of million pounds to recapture the Falklands from the invading Argentina.
- The relationship has always been a close one. Like all close relationships it has had difficult times. The US was first a British colony, but between 1775 and 1783 the US fought a war to become independent.
- The US fought the British again in the War of 1812.
- Since the Second World War, British government has often referred to the special relationship, which exists between Britain and the USA. There have been again occasional low points, such as Suez (the USA did not support Britain when Egypt took over the Suez Canal in 1956 from the international company owned by Britain and France, and Britain had to withdraw) and when the USA invaded the Caribbean island of Grenada (a member of Commonwealth).
- On the other hand, the USA helped Britain in the Falklands War and Britain gave more material support to the Americans during Gulf War in 1991 than any other European country and in the war against terrorism too.
- Why is the relationship special? An important reason for the friendship is that people of the two countries are very similar. They share the same languages and enjoy each other’s literature, films and television. Many Americans have British ancestors, or relatives still living in Britain. The US government and political system is based on Britain’s and there are many Anglo-American businesses operating on both sides of the Atlantic.
The ambiguous attitude to European Union can be partly explained by the fact that views about Britain’s position in Europe. There are people both for and against closer ties with Europe. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, it has been Britain more than any other member of EU which has slowed down progress towards further European unity. Meanwhile, there is a certain amount of popular distrust of the Brussels bureaucracy.
The British Empire
- The growth of the British Empire was at first the result of competition among European nations, especially Britain, France, Spain and the Netherlands, for new areas, in which to trade and new sources of raw materials. Explorers visited the Americas and the Far East and in the 16th century, trading companies, such as the Dutch and English East India Companies, were set up.
- Many colonies (places taken over by foreign countries and settled by people from that country) began as trading centres, or were founded to protect a trade route, and were run for the profit of the mother country. Some colonies were founded by people trying to make a new life for themselves, others were originally penal colonies (places where people were sent as a punishment).
- Britain gained its first foreign possession in the late 15th century. Newfoundland, now part of Canada, was claimed for England in 1497. Canada itself was won in 1763 after war with the French.
- During the 17th and 18th centuries, colonies were established on the east coast of North America, including Plymouth Colony.
- In the 1770s people in the American colonies became angry with Britain, mainly because of taxes they had to pay. This resulted in the American Revolution and later the independence of the United States.
- The wealthiest area in the early says of empire was the West Indies (several groups of islands between the south coast of the US and the north coast of the South America, forming a line which encloses the Caribbean Sea. There are about 1,200 islands in all. They include Cuba, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico, Dominica etc. They wre very important because of money made from sugar cane and tobacco.
- Slaves were brought to the West Indies from Africa to work in the plantations. The slave trade was abolished in the British Empire in 1807, though slavery didn’t end in the West Indies until 1838.
- The wealthy English East India Company controlled India for many years. After the company expanded into Bengal, the British Government began to see India as important politically and took a greater interest in the territory. Roads and railways were built to make trade easier and improve contact with more remote districts, a Governor General was put in charge, an British civil servants and troops were sent to the region.
- Australia discovered for Britain by Captain Cook, was first settled as a convicts colony. The first prisoners and their guards reached Botany Bay in 1788.
- New Zealand became a colony in 1840.
- From 1801 the expanding empire was managed from London by the Colonial Office.
- The second period of empire-building tool place in the late 19th century. At that time Britain was one of the leading economic and political powers in the world, and wanted to protect her interests and also increase her international influence by obtaining new lands. It was also thought by some people to be a matter of moral obligation and density to run poorer, less advanced countries and to pass on European culture to the native inhabitants. This was what Rudyard Kipling called the white man’s burden.
- Hong Kong was important for both trade with China and for strategic (political and military) reasons, and became a British colony in 1842. It later became an important business centre.
- In Africa, the Cape of Good Hope was important to Britain because it was on the sea route to India. It was bought from the Boers in 1815, and British settlers went out to live there alongside the Boers. There were many problems between them and it led to wars. After the Second Boer War in 1910 the Union of South Africa was formed.
- Between about 1870 and 1900 Britain, Belgium, France, Italy , and Germany took part in what came to be called the scramble for Africa. Explorers and missionaries (like David Livingstone) encouraged interest in the interior of Africa, and gaining control of these areas became important for national pride as well as providing new opportunities for trade. In 1884, the European nations agreed spheres of influence. Britain’s colonies in West Africa were the Gold Coast (now Ghana), Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Gambia. In East Africa Kenya, Uganda, Somaliland, Zanzibar, Northern and Southern Rhodesia (now Zambia and Zimbabwe) and Malawi. After WWI They took over former German colony of Tanganyika which later joined with Zanzibar to form Tanzania.
- In the 20th century many colonies had growing nationalist movements for independence.
- Canada, Australia and New Zealand had already become dominions (self governing regions) in 1907 and South Africa in 1910. Each had a British governor advised by local ministers. They gained full independence in 1931.
- India was given independence in 1947. The North-west and the north-east became West and East Pakistan and after a civil war in 1971 they became separate countries Pakistan and Bangladesh.
- Most other countries of the Empire became independent in the 1950s and 1960s, beginning with Ghana in 1957. When Hong Kong was returned to China in 1997, many people described this as the final part in the story of the Empire.
The Empire had both positive and negative influence on the cultures of the countries that were a part of it:
- civil service, local governments, army
- roads and railways
- schools were established
- racial prejudice
- no respect for local religions
- the most important cultural influence has been the spread of the English language
- The loss of the Empire meant loss of power and status, but Britain’s world influence has been partly maintained through the Commonwealth, which was founded in 1931.
- When countries became independent most chose to join the Commonwealth and keep their links with Britain.
- The Commonwealth is an association of 53 independent countries.
- 1931 – the British Commonwealth of Nations, since 1949 it has been known as the Commonwealth.
Members of the Commonwealth
- Antigua and Barbados 1981
- Australia 1931
- Bahamas 1973
- Bangladesh 1972
- Barbados 1966
- Belize 1981
- Botswana 1966
- Brunei Darussalam 1984
- Cameroon 1995
- Canada 1931
- Cyprus 1961
- Dominica 1978
- Fiji 1970-87, 1997
- The Gambia 1965
- Ghana 1957
- Grenada 1974
- Guyana 1966
- India 1947
- Jamaica 1962
- Kenya 1963
- Kiribati 1979
- Lesotho 1966
- Malawi 1964
- Malaysia 1957
- Maldives 1982
- Malta 1964
- Mauritius 1968
- Mozambique 1995
- Namibia 1990
- Nauru 1968
- New Zealand 1931
- Nigeria 1960; suspended in 1995
- Pakistan 1947-52, 1989
- Papua New Guinea 1975
- St Kitts and Nevis 1983
- St Lucia 1979
- St Vincent and the Grenadines 1979
- Seychelles 1976
- Sierra Leone 1961
- Singapore 1965
- Solomon Islands 1978
- South Africa 1931-61, 1994
- Sri Lanka 1948
- Swaziland 1968
- Tanzania 1961
- Tonga 1970
- Trinidad and Tobago 1962
- Tuvalu 1978
- Uganda 1962
- United Kingdom 1931
- Vanuatu 1980
- Western Samoa 1970
- Zambia 1964
- Zimbabwe 1980
Britain’s dependent territories are: Anguilla, Bermuda, British Antarctic Territory, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn, Henderson and Ducie, St Helena, Turks and Caicos Islands, Ascension Islands, and Tristan da Cunha.
- The Commonwealth Secretariat:
- the Commonwealth Fund for Technical Cooperation
- the Commonwealth Youth Programme
- the Commonwealth Science Council
- The Commonwealth Conference, a meeting of the heads of government of all Commonwealth states, is held every two years. It is organized by the Commonwealth Secretariat which is based in London. Its tasks:
- to promote sustainable economic and social development
- to provide universal access to education
- to protect the environment
- search for the peace and stability in the world
- Ministers from Commonwealth countries also meet regularly to review developments in specific fields, including education, science, finance, justice, health and youth affairs.
- Non-governmental organizations - teacher trainings, students exchanges, environmental projects, sports, art festivals.
- The Head of Commonwealth
- The London Declaration, issued in 1949 after a Commonwealth Prime Ministers´ meeting, recognised the King as the symbol of the Commonwealth.
- In 15 states the Queen is the Head of State.
- The Commonwealth Day is held on the second Monday in March, a date chosen because all Commonwealth children will then be at school. A special message is broadcast by the Queen.
- the Games always include athletics and swimming, and the host country choose at least eight other sports from: archery, cycling, shooting, triathlon, badminton, fencing, squash, weightlifting, bowls, gymnastics, table tennis, wrestling, boxing, judo, tennis, yachting, canoeing, rowing, ten pin bowling. The first of what was then called the British Empire Games in 1930 was hosted by the Canadian city of Hamilton. Eleven countries and 450 competitors took part in six sports.
- The Games are held every four years and are open to amateur competitors from the Commonwealth. They seek to differ from the Olympics, in that competition is between individuals, not the countries.
The host country also selects one or more team sports.
- Victoria 1994
- Malaysia 1998 (Kuala Lumpur)
- Manchester 2002 – the 17th Games
- Melbourne 2006
- New Delhi 2010