Vocabulary Quiz on Sundays, Rearranging Sentences on Fridays

Showing posts with label 21st century life. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 21st century life. Show all posts

Saturday, 4 August 2018


What kind of a sentence is that! 'You cannot 'not communicate!!!'

Well, would you say 'Yes' if I ask you whether you can communicate with someone without using words. I think you will. In fact, you would also cite various instances to validate your point. You would refer to non-verbal ways of communication, e.g. gestures, eye contact, etc. You may even go on to say that by means of traffic lights, messages are conveyed as well. 

Let us use an umbrella term which can cover all the various traditional ways in which we, in general, think the process of 'communication' takes place: INTENTIONAL COMMUNICATION. Obviously, you want to say something in either speech or writing and you interact with someone. Or, maybe, you used gestures to convey something. Whatever it is, one thing is for sure that whenever we talk about communication, more often than not, we refer to it from the perspective of the sender of the information without really bothering about the receiver and the way that message would be received by the person at the other end. And, this is the precise reason why people, and most importantly, their messages are often misunderstood. 

In the previous sentence, the word, 'messages', is really important for us. We must understand that our behaviour, our hairstyle, our attire, our perfume convey a certain amount of information to the people we come across. It's not just that! Even when you appear to be Online on whatsapp or facebook (but in reality, maybe, you are not), it does send a piece of information to the others. It is the way that this information is interpreted by the receiver helps him/her make meaning out of a situation. Even if it leads to a misunderstanding, we can't deny that we often feel ignored or insulted when someone does not respond to our messages despite remaining online. How often do we consider the fact that, maybe, s/he isn't really available at this moment! Maybe, s/he has forgotten to log out! 

So, the whole point is that even if you don't say or do something, you create an impression on others. This impression is based on the interpretation of the sum total of all the intentional and unintentional information that you send. Thus, whether you like it or not you always communicate. That is why, we must remain cautious. Otherwise, we might fall prey to UNINTENTIONAL COMMUNICATION. And, I guess that is exactly what is happening everywhere. There are people who do not care how they should behave with others, and at the same time, there are those who don't think twice before coming to a conclusion. Remember that COMMUNICATION will take place the moment a message (intentional or unintentional) is interpreted, that is, whenever, one can make meaning out of a situation. In addition, it should be noted that the source(/s) of the message may be unprecedented.  

What do you think?

Friday, 3 August 2018


Let me respond to the topic at hand by posing a question. Do you think there are no thieves, robbers, murderers, rapists in English speaking countries? I think you have got your answer. The association of the use of a certain language or a particular dialect of the language concerned with social respectability has always been prevalent since the olden days.

If one looks up the history books, one would find that there was a time when the written doctrines of a popular religion was prohibited to be translated into English. There were, I am sure, many questionable reasons behind such indignation towards the English language. But, one thing is for sure that English was once considered inferior to Latin in England in terms of the respectability it bestowed upon its users in the social sphere. Of course, over the course of history, the narrative changed. English became more widespread and capable enough to sustain itself through its users, whereas Latin became a showpiece item in the language bank of a handful of educated people in Great Britain. 

The effect of British colonialism made English a symbol of power and to a certain extent, an object of fear mixed with awe. From fear came respect and from respect the desire to be associated with the British rulers. They were considered far superior to the natives by many of the colonized. 

The language of the king represented the king. This very notion of honour and grandeur which the mass associated at that time was marketed wisely in such a manner that in India today most of us remain in awe when we hear someone speak English fluently. Obviously, a language represents a culture. But, does its use ensure that someone's core characteristics would be noble? I do not think so. 

One must be a good user of English. But, it does not guarantee that one is a good person as well. At the same time, if one is not proficient in English, it does not imply that one is not a good human being. However, given the present circumstances, the chances of getting a respectable job are poor if one is not good at English overall. So, even if one gets respect in India on the basis of one's English language skills, it will not last for long if one does not capitalize on it. 

What do you think?

Thursday, 2 August 2018


From the early morning news to the late night talk shows, from the morning to the evening newspapers, if there is one thing that the hosts and the writers mostly talk about is the failure of people in appreciating the uniqueness of their fellow human beings- the uniqueness that makes them different. But, why is it so? It's strange since we, human beings, seldom prefer monotony. There are innumerable instances in our daily lives where we feel bored due to a lack of variety in the proceedings, but are often forced to do certain things we won't do otherwise for either job purposes or financial reasons. When we welcome variety like fresh air, why is it that many of us do not appreciate people who are different from us in terms of caste, creed, religion, gender, nationality and point of views? But, then, do we not learn we should respect each other from the very early childhood? We do. So, where does the problem lie? 

In my opinion, the problem lies in trying to find the sameness in the difference. Let me explicate what I have just said. I feel that when we wish to identify the extent of our similarities, we depreciate the fundamental differences in ourselves. The fact that there are certain core characteristics that make you YOU, and that there are certain essential qualities that make me ME is often forgotten. We can only adapt to something different when, mentally, we start accepting the difference. Unfortunately, we rarely learn that without external pressure. 

Instead of teaching kids that 'we are all the same', we should teach them that we are all different and that is a good thing. In the traditional way of things, a person goes through several experiences which conditions one's mind to generalize everything. However, if we let kids experience the uniqueness of individuals, the chances are that they would start appreciating the qualities that make one different from another. 

What do you think?