My inspiration for coining the word Englistics more than 20 years ago was based on a frustration and a conviction. A frustration that with the unique forces at work on the English Language that those studying it continue to insist on widening its scope of study without recognising the inevitable affects of globalisation – on what is to all effects the world’s lingua franca. And a conviction that by allowing other languages and cultural forces to shape its development the core language is being debased simply for esoteric purposes and a dynamic area of study, that includes anthropology, sociology and sociolinguistics, not being fully explored.
Declaring Englistics as a separate branch of study, and apply greater scrutiny to how far the stem of the Language should be stretched before its elasticity – and our brains plasticity – is overstretched. Such a declaration would give a renewed focus and energy to the omnipresent debate that rages about English as it is spoken and inspired within the USA, and that spoken in England. It would also allows us to fully engage with the opportunity failed multiculturalism in the United Kingdom, the reinterpretation of the American Dream in the USA – first driven by core issues and then a high state of black consciousness, before being diminished by its inevitable commodification of its symbols and signals – and the emergence of new cultures and economies seeking hegemony of the language that for so many reasons will dominate the 21st Century. And in the form of Englistics …….the times and ages beyond.
The debate over time will advance and English will be recognised as the primogeniture of Englistics. This is not about resistance to change. New words are coined and created and the meaning of words changes all the time, just consider from a historical perspective the change in the colloquial use of Egregious and the more modern – and highly conflicted – treatment of the word “sick” by noughties youth culture. The linguistic and etymological currents born out of new technology and its far-reaching impact of new methods of communication, sociolinguistics, convergence that allows globalisation and mass migration and inspires the drive for change are strong flowing and a source of tension across both sides of the “pond” (i.e. USA and ENG) , but hopefully this agitation is just a precursor to a new epoch and the creation of a new discipline of intellectual and academic study: Englistics. Just think if we don’t take this step how will we cope with the creeping occupation of the language by the new emergent, such as China, and the potential – if not inevitable – colonisation from the stars……….
For those of a sensitive disposition I should add I have no prior knowledge of any alien invasion from Mars, Venus or Uranus, however the rumours about Kepler-22b
The academic arguments are more likely to be advanced at www.englistics.com and www.englistics.co.uk going forward which are both held by David Hall, their creator and the words originator. They may on occasion be considered here, but this digital space like the work of Englistics, first early adopter, Bleudogman, is designed to be more accessible and celebrate English in hopefully a more contemporary way and to justify the Englistics predicate. At the time of writing there is only one other domain registered, www.englistics.info , and that unsurprisingly is registered to Bleudogman. I will have no influence or control over what is written at his Englistics blog or in the future at the .info space.