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Robert McCrum: 'Globish' is replacing English

24th May 2010

Linguist and writer Robert McCrum has claimed that 'Globish' is becoming the dominant form of language as the world becomes more interconnected.

The writer of The Story of English claims in his new book, Globish, that the patchwork of different languages that have been incorporated into global English has made it much more accessible.

'In the 19th century you had British English, which was international, in the 20th century, American English became the lingua franca,' McCrum told Reuters.

He added: 'Now there is a third phase in the 21st century - the Globish century.'

McCrum took the name Globish from Jean-Paul Nerriere, who has written a number of books about the evolution of language.

Nerriere claims that Globish uses about 1,500 English words to construct short, simple sentences, with speakers making up for the loss of meaning with increased gesticulation.

McCrum has been associate editor of the Observer and editor-in-chief at Faber & Faber.

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