Language is culture

December 1, 2021

Growing up, children learn the language that they are initially surrounded in, which acts as a tool to understanding both the people and the culture it is tied to. Culture and language go hand and hand as they both have impacts on what defines and shapes understandings and beliefs.
Language was invented as a tool to allow us to better understand each other. It allows us to communicate our feelings, beliefs, emotions, to find connections within one another, to see how we relate and how we differ.

“If you don’t understand the culture, not knowing that language could create misunderstandings.””

— Rolando Castellanos

Culture is also an expression, one that uses language to make connections and build relationships between a group of people. To understand one’s culture, it is essential to understand their language and the way in which that culture might think and perceive things.

“Language could be a cultural barrier in more than one way because of the lack of understanding and how to communicate effectively. If you don’t understand the culture, not knowing that language could create misunderstandings among people,” Spanish teacher Rolando Castellanos said.

Different cultures often represent different values and express them through their language in various ways. Even though we express things differently based on the culture or the language we are familiar with, can language really determine how we perceive the world?

Again, the settings we grow up in (therefore the cultures and languages we are surrounded by) will inevitably influence how we view the world. It is very difficult to express a feeling without being aware of what it is or without having a word to define it.

Among the many benefits that come from being multilingual, speaking multiple languages allows individuals to connect and understand different cultures and communities. It can be difficult to directly translate concepts between languages. Understanding more languages can mean understanding a more diverse range of people, cultures, and places throughout the world.

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