UK Language Translation: Why It is Important Today

UK Language Translation: Why It is Important Today

Most people are aware that English is the most widely used language in the UK. However, it is not common knowledge that the UK actually has other indigenous languages. Yes, the British Isles actually possesses a vast array of untapped linguistic resources that have been allowed to languish and almost go extinct. Some of these languages include;

  1. Welsh
  2. Gaelic
  3. Scots
  4. Manx
  5. Irish
  6. Cornish
  7. Shelta
  8. Angloromani

Only in recent times have these minority languages experienced a comeback, fuelled by the agitation of a few campaigning bodies like The Welsh Language Society. The group cites emigration of youth, economic factors, and unaffordable housing as part of the reasons why Welsh-language communities are disappearing.

The agitation to bring official status to indigenous languages like Welsh is recently bearing fruit. About quarter of school pupils in Wales are taught in Welsh, 30 Irish-medium schools are now situated in Northern Ireland, and a few Gaelic schools have been opened in Scotland's capital.

Why Should The UK's Indigenous Languages Even Matter Anymore?

Although many people in the UK think that indigenous languages aren't useful in the modern world, the sentiment is actually incorrect. Indigenous languages can be vibrant, and relevant day-to-day in the Gaelic Heartlands and communities like Cardiff and even London. Multilingualism naturally causes human societies to thrive. And learning any new language, including old ones, comes with multiple advantages. Generally, language skill deficiencies are costing the UK money and business. Trade performance is poor because of poor language skills which are acting as a barrier to connecting with other trade partners.

The benefits of multilingualism are best felt by those who are multilingual from a young age, but late learning can still cause significant mental growth. Speaking more than one language can strengthen the UK workforce in subtle, long-term ways because;

  1. It is good for brain health and slows down the onset of dementia.
  2. It induces better metalinguistic reasoning as a result of using the knowledge of one language to advance the other.
  3. It gives better ability to concentrate and process info, improves attention, and increases flexibility in thinking.
  4. It improves the innate capacity to learn other languages, increasing business and social relations across international barriers.

For a wider effect, multilingualism can;

  1. Foster positive social relations and tolerance.
  2. Improve public services like legal, policing, health services
  3. Solve social inequality, improve social mobility and protect basic human rights.
  4. Open up employment opportunities.
  5. Strengthen diplomacy, internal and external defense and security

All these benefits will contribute to a society that is strengthened from within. By recognizing the value of heritage and indigenous languages, the UK can build up its social cohesion and national linguistic capacity.

How Can Translation Help To Export UK's Indigenous Languages To The World?

It is time for the UK to recognize language's value as the valuable resource that it is. Indigenous languages need to be integrated into every aspect of society and exported to other parts of the world. This will ensure growth but within and without. Business, legal and government documents must proudly embrace translations that include Welsh, Gaelic, Scots, etc., and introduce this diversity to the world. This will;

  1. Tighten ties with the regions that share a common thread in the UK's language diversity.
  2. Attract tourism and trade because of the proud display of a rich and almost forgotten heritage.
  3. Enrich the UK's diversity profile by reviving dying languages.
  4. Motivate other countries to learn the languages in order to do business with the UK.
  5. Improve the UK's global profile by placing it on the lips of its business partners because of the consistent injection of the indigenous languages into the global sphere.
  6. Promote tolerance, open up more economic opportunity and see the UK avoid the economic downturn that its linguistic deficiency has caused.

Linguistic diversity has a powerful economic impact on any country. In a decade when the UK's economy is experiencing its weakest growth in a decade, it has never been more important to use language as a unifier and also to induce growth. The economic cost of the UK's linguistic deficiency is estimated to reach up to 3.5% of its GDP annually. Language is a valuable resource, and so the UK must seriously consider encouraging multilingualism as part of the solution to economic growth.

In Closing

The UK must begin to value its language diversity and take advantage of a multilingual profile. Attitudes are changing and the impression that these indigenous languages are useless or dead is gradually changing. Slowly but surely, the old is becoming fresh again, and being a part of that revolution could be the difference between staying relevant in global business, or remaining static.

It is important to be a part of the growing movement to create a more global Britain and foster intercultural ties. Contact us to get a quote on how to introduce the UK's rich linguistic diversity into legal documents and other translation projects!