Which is more important, language or literature? [Archives:2007/1081/Community]

August 30 2007

By: Adel ALadlany
English language graduate
Amran Faculty

This was the title of a debate held last recently at the faculty of Education, in Amran governorate, for the students of English Department. There were more than forty male and female students participating. I was in favor of language.

Of course you will ask why? It seems to me that language is more important than literature because it happens first in the process of learning a foreign language. Moreover, it is the main stone of building up a civilization.

Language is a medium of communication by which you can express your ideas, feelings, and can convey them to others. Any culture over the world is preserved in language and transmitted through it. Additionally, language plays a central role in the process of education. It is also used in all the kinds of social and personal situations and no study can ignore the significance of language.

Learning a language as a science is regarded as a logical way for the foreign -language learners. Therefore, the material of a language is graded from simple to more complex; it is presented in an organized sequence, which begins with objects and gradually moves to abstract things.

No one can swim in at the sea without learning how to swim; otherwise he/she will be drowned in the water. So, learning a language is like swimming and that's why language is more important than literature. And, we know that language has three components: sound, structure, and meaning; every component has scientific studies to enable foreign learners to gain the basics of a language. For instance, phonetics is related to the sound of a language. Syntax, structure, and morphology are related to structure. On the other hand, semantics and pragmatics are related to meaning. Therefore, language learners are being helped, by those scientific classifications, to gain the basic knowledge in order to swim at the sea of literature.

Eventually, language learning is the first and important step towards producing literature.