The topic at hand speaks on the impact and effect language has on the wealth of an individual. The content of my response links to a particular part and topic of the course because it links to both bilingualism and language and thought. It speaks of the difference between the sentence structures and grammar of languages, connecting to bilingualism. Not only that, it also addresses how these structures and grammar affect an individual’s thinking on a daily basis, more specifically, how they think about their money (connecting to language and thought).
This analyzes the impact of language changes because it shows the influence different languages have on the wealth of an individual. I intend to utilize the text type of a blog since it allows for a more personal and critical point of view without being too “formal” or too “safe”. It only seems fitting for the blog to be from my perspective as I am a bilingual child who was raised to be mindful about money.
Although my native language of Tagalog and my second language of English both have some sort of future tense, my point of view still allows for more insight from an outside perspective on the topic. The audience or directed group of people that I am writing this to are the people who feel as though every little thing that needed to be said about this topic has been said. However, I am here to challenge that and add a point in which authors pertaining to this topic has forgotten to address or connect to.
In addition, I am also here to prove that there is a direct correlation between an individual’s language and thoughts and the amount of money they have.
Hey everyone! It’s Minimatt here. Back with another blog, but this time I want to switch it up a little. I would like to pose you guys with a question. How come two people with the exact same job, with the exact same degree, and the exact same amount of experience can have two totally different amounts of wealth? For example, people in the United States and United Kingdom hover around 15% for their average savings rate. While on the other hand, the people of South Korea and Russian Fed have their savings rate at around 35%.Then, there’s Luxemburg who simply towers the world’s population with a savings rate of over 40% (Business Insider). Why is this? Is it how wisely they spend their money? How urgent saving is to them? How they value a single dollar? Yes, these are all very important factors that connect back to one source. That source being the language an individual speaks. Believe it or not, the language a person speaks greatly affects how they think. It impacts the way they ponder over the simplest things. However, before we can talk about the effect of language, it’s necessary to know what language exactly is.
Language is an important part, if not the most important aspect of a person. As it is stated in the dictionary, language is “a systematic means of communicating ideas or feelings by the use of conventionalized signs, sounds, gestures, or marks having understood meanings” (Merriam Webster). It is the only way to interact with other people and have thought. It is also the reason why humans are identified as a social species. Adam Szczegielniak, a man who both earned a PhD and taught linguistics at Harvard and many other big colleges, stated that the “ability to use language, perhaps more than any other attribute, distinguishes humans from other animals”. Clearly, language partakes in everything we do and makes up who we are.
Now, I will restate the main idea in the form of a question. How does language affect and impact the wealth of an individual? Language affects how much money someone has because it is what makes up an individual’s thought. This means that with different languages, comes different ideas and opinions on the money they own. For example, according to Keith Chan, a professor of UCLA who teaches PhD behavioral economics, some languages see the future as something close to the present while others see it as something that is much further away. Why is that? It is because of the difference in sentence structure and the difference in grammar of those languages. In english, I could say “I will have to spend money on Friday on groceries.” However in another language, it could translate to something much closer to “On Friday, I have to spend money on groceries.” That subtle difference of having “will” in the grammar of the sentence and having the sentences structured differently creates a feeling of distance. It paints an illusion in the individual’s mind that they have a lot more time than they really do until Friday. It makes sense that people with a more “present-minded” future tense would be more cautious with their money and savings. A sense of urgency is created due to their grammar and sentence structure. It is only logical that it would result in a perspective in which every dollar is valued and put into a wise plan for spending. Although it is proven that sentence structure and grammar affects the wealth of an individual, I would like to challenge my readers into thinking that perhaps the culture in which the language came from could have an effect on the wealth of an individual as well.
Growing up as a young boy with a Filipino background, I was raised to be very mindful and selective when it comes to money. I was never able to spend it on the toys i wanted like bakugan, or trends that came and went for my generation, like kendamas. Not only that, I couldn’t use my money to buy any articles of clothing that my family found too expensive. My parents always taught me that there were only a few exceptions when it comes to spending money: family, food, clothes that were reasonably priced, and sports. I fluently speak Tagalog, the native Filipino language, which holds a more “present-minded” future tense. However, I also fluently speak english which holds a more “distant” future tense. So which language affects my thought? Does it balance out? The thing is, I was both born and raised in America. I also use english a lot due to school, sports, etc. So, you would think I would be less cautious with money because I use a language holding a “further” future tense more on a daily basis. However, I do not believe this is true. The cultural background my parents brought and instilled upon me has taught me to be more conscientious with my money. In my opinion, the Filipino culture that Tagalog came from affects what I do with my money much more than the language itself since I only use the language at home and all of my spending occurs when I am outside the house.
Language affects the wealth of a person since language affects that individual’s thoughts and impacts what they do with money. However, the cultural background of the languages can contribute to what they think of money as well. So my readers, I leave you with this final concluding question. What truly determines the wealth of a person?
As always, thank you for reading. This is Minimatt signing off. Peace!