English as a Global Language


WOOCS 2.1.9


David Crystal

David Crystal’s classic English as a Global Language considers the history, present status and future of the English language, focusing on its role as the leading international language. English has been deemed the most ‘successful’ language ever, with 1500 million speakers internationally, presenting a difficult task to those who wish to investigate it in its entirety. However, Crystal explores the subject in a measured but engaging way, always backing up observations with facts and figures. Written in a detailed and fascinating manner, this is a book written by an expert both for specialists in the subject and for general readers interested in the English language.

  • The best available account of English as an international phenomenon
  • Updated edition, with extra sections on the future of English as a world language, English on the Internet, the possibility of an English ‘family’ of languages, footnotes and a full bibliography
  • Suitable for anyone of any nationality concerned with English: teachers, students, language professionals, politicians, general readers and anyone with a love of the language

1. Why a global language?
2. Why English? The historical context
3. Why English? The cultural foundation
4. Why English? The cultural legacy
5. The future of global English
List of tables.

Additional information




Cambridge University Press

Publication date

March 2012