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The internationalisation of English & Sri Lankan English


Manique Gunesekera

University of Kelaniya, LK
About Manique
Head, Department of English and ELTU
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This paper is an analysis of the emergence of International Standard English and the impact of this phenomenon on Sri Lankan English. For over 100 years, world English was influenced by two main varieties; namely, Standard British English and Standard American' English. However, a major linguistic development in the latter half of the 20th century, was the evolution and acceptance of national standards of English, such as Australian, Indian, Singaporean, Sri Lankan. The national standard was a demonstration of national identity in many postcolonial societies. Today, a new trend is emerging, where one international standard appears to be taking centre-stage and attempting to submerge the national standard. Therefore, a study of language and identity in terms of the globalization of English is required. The data for this study consist of official documentation of the United Nations Organization in Sri Lanka, This comparative study of, officialese' is crucial also from the point of view of the Education Reforms, now in place in Sri Lanka, A major problem of Sri Lankan English is the crisis faced by the majority of professionals who are uncomfortable with a national variety of English and a national standard for Sri Lanka, in the midst of global varieties of English.
How to Cite: Gunesekera, M., 2003. The internationalisation of English & Sri Lankan English. Sri Lanka Journal of Social Sciences, 25(1-2), pp.93–108. DOI:
Published on 28 Dec 2003.
Peer Reviewed


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