Response to Online Article: Babel Runs Backwards

Pages: 2 (842 words) Published: November 11, 2009
Reaction to “Babel Runs Backward”
I found this article to be incredibly enlightening. I was moved by the idea that there are thousands of languages spoken today that may not be spoken tomorrow. The authors do a fantastic job in creating a sense of responsibility and urgency in the reader. By using modern, non-third world languages as examples of languages endangered of becoming extinct, such as Welsh, and Hawaiian, not only is the reader able to easily understand the scope of the problem, but, for those readers in places such as America and Northwestern Europe especially, the issue is brought a little too close to home for comfort. I initially had read the article about a month ago, and returned to re-read it last week. My first experience had left me feeling awakened and energized. However, it wasn't until mine revisiting the article that I even recalled having had felt those emotions in the first place. Initially, upon remembering my once felt motivation, I felt somewhat guilty. You see, it was through actions, or lack there of, like my own that had been, and will continue to be, the very reason behind the demise of so many thousands of languages. Feelings of guilt soon gave way to those of shamefulness for having had abandoned my cause. What had happened? How could I have been so selfish? Could it have been that I cared so little? I was forced to turn inward. And, there, while scrutinizing my memories sense last reading this article, I found the answers I was looking for.

Though this reading did make me feel as though something must be done to save the endangered languages from extinction, and, thus simultaneously saving their parent cultures as well. I must say there had also been a much more subtle sense of “too little, too late”. As if the issue were out of my hands. After my first reading, my feelings of empowerment had been so strong that I could not have been bothered by such feelings of helplessness. Not that I would have been, even...
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