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Old 12-17-2009, 11:58 PM
9 posts, read 30,257 times
Reputation: 22


English, Spanish, Chinese, Russian, Portuguese, Arabic, Bengali, Indonesian, French, German

Problem is that Chinese, Arabic, and 'Indonesian' are really full of many dialects bordering on being separate languages, so sticking with the Romance language group for most Americans makes the most sense if you want to expand beyond English. SPANISH first.
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Old 12-18-2009, 12:28 AM
Location: In the heights
37,161 posts, read 39,451,107 times
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I feel like there's a short supply of people who learn language pairs not including English, but for which there is a great demand.
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Old 05-28-2010, 01:00 PM
Location: Zagreb, Croatia
344 posts, read 462,809 times
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Old 05-28-2010, 09:30 PM
241 posts, read 742,937 times
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Completely depends on where you want to work. English will likely remain the most global language during our lifetimes. If you plan to work in another country or in a field that deals with businesses, clients, representatives from a specific country, learn that language. I'm not buying that Mandarin and the Chinese are going to take over. No one is certain about the future of that country or the strength of its own businesses. A lot is happening IN that country, though a lot of that is through government tricks and the presence of countries which are headquartered outside China. If you're working in International business or making products to sell globally, of course it is a massive market and learning that language would certainly be useful. Korea has also been doing well, and Japan is still leading in many ways. You can make an argument for learning any or all of those.

Another way to look at this is to rewind back into the 1980's when Japan was booming and buying up everything. You could have thought at that time the Japanese were taking over and you better learn Japanese and teach your kids Japanese because it's the guaranteed future. Well, it didn't turn out that way. Japan is still strong, but I think much of the world is fine not knowing Japanese. Again, those in international business or selling products would benefit from understanding it if interested in their market, but it hardly matters to most people outside of Japan.

I think parents are better off teaching their children the languages in their area rather than Mandarin because of the hype surrounding China. When your child is 21 and speaks Mandarin but has no interest in international business, importing/exporting, or working in China (and this is assuming China's growth continues), it's more likely the other languages common in the area they live are going to be far more useful for their future. And what will they do with that knowledge of Mandarin then?

Last edited by vaga bond; 05-28-2010 at 10:02 PM..
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Old 05-29-2010, 02:57 AM
1 posts, read 1,674 times
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First of all we have to understand that we are doing this forum in English. Most of the country using the same language that is English. second is, in market most of elctronic equipment is manufacturing by Japan. My point of view is as follow :-
1 . English
2 . Japan
3 . French
4 . Mandrin
5 . Spanish
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Old 06-01-2010, 03:31 AM
3 posts, read 8,067 times
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Mandarin is becoming pretty important in international business.
Speaking mandarin gives you a big personal advantage, because hardly anybody in "the West" speaks it, so speaking mandarin is a big plus when looking for highly paid jobs.

Of course one can argue, that all Chinese with a brain speak English nowadays, but having done business in mainland china I can tell you that it is a big advantage, communicating in THEIR language for various reasons.
At least from my experience.

But of course, if your business/personal life is around the Americas, Spanish would be the more important language for you.
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Old 06-01-2010, 05:36 AM
5,781 posts, read 11,878,133 times
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In order to answer candidly this question, one must factor in the degree of difficulty of the language : for a native English speaker, mastering Eastern languages , with a different alphabet, is basically extremely difficult ! so lazy me would rather embrace learning (in that order) 1Spanish-2German-3French, which can be done easily in a few weeks. Knowing only a little of these three languages will open up to you the whole of Latin America save Brazil, most of Western/Northern Africa, and most of Europe!
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Old 06-01-2010, 06:07 AM
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@ reinici : I don't share your views.
1) Mandarin is right now a craze among the elite and their children, but I'm old enough to remember a time (30 years ago) where it was "in" for everyone in those circles to learn Japanese; it seems to me it was only a fashionable thing to do but I remember that everybody back then said it was necessary to learn that language to enhance a business career, same with Mandarin today (and what of Cantonese? the Chinese don't speak only Mandarin, and I guess in Taiwan it's a different brand of Chinese too).
2)the economy shouldn't be the only reason to learn a language, because for one thing, the economic successes of China, for many reasons, will not last forever probably, and another country could become one day the "leader of the band" and besides, people don't like it when you learn their language just to make a fast buck instead of having a genuine interest in their culture,
3) I find it weird that so many English and French speaking people, who traditionally have a hard time learning foreign languages (how many British/US citizens fluent in French and French citizens fluent in English, which are "sister languages" ? I'd like to know) are keen to learn -because it's "posh"- a language of ideograms, impossible to learn-short of dedicating himself to it with herculean willpower- for a Western adult with an average IQ ????????????????????????????????
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Old 06-01-2010, 07:18 AM
Location: Colorado
1,523 posts, read 2,866,273 times
Reputation: 2220
I learned French as a second language and learned it fluently and it is has been very useful when traveling. French is much more spoken than people think. In countries like Algeria and many other African countries, the bulk of the population (the poor to be blunt about it) only know words or sentences, but the middle and upper classes who you will meet travelling or who own the businesses etc. speak beautiful French. A great benefit of speaking both English and French is that Spanish, Portugese and Italian are all fairly easy to read now and I can understand much of it. In fact, I more or less speak Spanish because of learning French, but I can't distinguish between past/present in Spanish, or distinguish between "I would" and "I should" for example.

French is actually the second most studied language in the world after English. It is a often a requirement for prestigious and highly skilled jobs. I would recommend it because it's been nothing but incredibly helpful for me.
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Old 06-02-2010, 02:10 PM
Location: Houston, TX
1,138 posts, read 3,291,293 times
Reputation: 818
Spanish without a question. I believe it is the second most spoken language in the world after English. After Spanish...I would say Chinese.
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