Why learn a foreign language?

There are several reasons to learn a new language; they can be for intellectual reasons, cultural, instrumental or even financial. Let’s see some of these reasons that can motivate you to start and keep up your studies.

Cultural

Language is an essential part of a country’s culture. In short, to understand the “other”, you must understand how they express themselves. If you are interested in some particular aspect of a country (movies, sports, music, literature, arts …) the best way to fully learn the subject is to understand the language of that country, also because the majority of materials on this particular subject will be probably in that language.

Emigration and Tourism

When you know the language of the country you’re visiting or living, you interact and communicate much better with the local community. The locals will show themselves much friendlier, not only because they will understand you better, but mainly because you‘ll show them respect and genuine interest in the country. Even, if your language skill is still low they probably will be happy that you’re at least trying.

Religion

Missionaries need to understand other languages to spread their messages. Throughout history they have had a key role in documenting languages and written translations. In addition, learning a new language helps to understand a religion better. For example, to the major religions it’s interesting to know:

Christians: Hebrew, Greek, Latin and Aramaic.
Muslims: Arab or old Arabic
Buddhism: Sanskrit

Secret communication

That is a fun and funny reason why someone should learn another language. Imagine that  you and a friend, relative or acquaintance speak a different language, you can have any kind of talk in public without worrying if others are listening or not. Also, it helps to not feel like an idiot when you know people who do this sort of thing. You can also write down a journal or any kind of thing, and most people will have no idea what you’re writing about it.

Educational and research purposes

Finding some kind of specific information is always easier if you know another language. Knowing another language facilitates access to materials and contact to students / researchers from abroad.

Studying Abroad

It is to join business with pleasure. When you learn a new language to study in a school or university abroad you can experience no only the student life, but also try a number of others aspects of the country. It’s possible to know the culture, try their food, get to know people and see things in a more local perspective. But for this, you must have an intermediate to advanced knowledge in the language.

Gormandize

Uhmm, tacos, sushi, yakissoba, kafta, risotto, pasta, feijoada, paella, crêpe, ceviche, pad thai … Need I say more? If you’re a fan of international cuisine is a delicious excuse to learn a new language.

Work and money

In Brazil and in all countries where English is not the native language, it’s almost an obligation to know English to get a good job. Knowing another language increases your chances of finding a job, get promoted and work abroad. Facilitate meetings and negotiations, but the most interesting part here: fluency in English can increase up to 50% salary in Brazil. In others countries is probably not too different.

Or yet, you can learn another language:

• Because you like challenges.
• Because you like the way it sounds.
• To keep your mental health.
• To sing songs in other languages.
• To help other people.
• Because it’s fun.
• Because you just love learning.

About Nathalia

Polyglot Nerd creator, love foreign cultures and learning languages. Speak: English, Portuguese and Spanish. Learning: French
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