Relationship between Language and Culture

Relationship between Language and Culture

Relationship between Language and Culture

Language is entirely a human achievement. It enables man to share the experiences and thoughts of his fellows and to re-create his personal experiences for their benefit. A society that lacks language cannot make the continuity of the behavior and learnings necessary for the creation of the culture. Language is not something that is genetically inherited; rather it is an art that has to be learned.

All living animals including living primates (monkeys and apes) use more or less three means to communicate with each other. These are; sound, body movement, and odor. They make various types of calls for various purposes but possess no linguistic capacity. In fact, animal sounds are fixed and instinctive that vary within a limited range whereas human sounds have an unlimited range. Therefore, language is the characteristic feature of a human being that distinguishes him from other animals.

Men possess language as long as he possesses culture. A language comes into existence when two or more individuals agree to attach the same meaning to the same sound. The meanings denote the symbols, which may have certain kinds of physical form. A symbol may be a material object or a color or a typical sound or an odor or a motion code. There is a simple difference between speech and language. Language is the conceptual code, the system of knowledge that enables a person to produce and understand speech. Speech is the actual behavior, the utterance of words or sounds by a person. The language is, in this sense, more than the speech and it is a particular means of expression that cannot stand alone. It depends on the culture and explains a culture.

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