Russian Keys

Linguistics & National Security: A View from Russia

MAY, SEPTEMBER 2013 Location: MASSEY UNIVERSITY, Wellington Full
Dr Olga Suvorova

Director, Russian Keys Limited

Linguistics and National Security are tightly connected.
Language as a mirror of culture reflects good and bad developments within a nation.
Language is a treasure box and a tool which moulds people from their birth.
The art of communication in the modern world is extremely important. When we study foreign languages and cultures, and when we try to understand them and unveil them then we have access to the best what is in the world – new discoveries, new perceptions. We also have more chances to prevent global terrorism and wrong doings. More disputes and wars can be avoided if people treat and use languages with more care and attention.
The greatest Russian poet Alexander Pushkin said: Which can be paraphrased as “I detest everything about my country but if a foreigner shares such an opinion with me I hate him!”

Linguist David Crystal in his work English as a Global Language says: In 500 years time… If English is be then the only language left to be learned, it will have been the greatest intellectual disaster the planet has ever known. Beauty of world is in its diversity. It is not easy to be as diverse but it is important to keep it this way.

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Studying and teaching foreign languages helps to keep the world safe. When you study a foreign language you get interested in the culture of that language and nation too. We do need to emphasise the importance of Foreign Language Teaching, develop new language strategies, improve language teaching methods and techniques.

Teachers of foreign languages, interpreters, translators are peacekeepers and missionaries bringing peace, tolerance, international cooperation to the world through the possibility of international communication.

The Seminar provides the opportunity to learn about and discuss recent key findings in many linguistic, cultural and social areas regarding global language and globalisation; the significance of national languages and cultures as a matter of security; common, but negative, ways in which language can be used to offend and provoke aggression and xenophobia; the motivation techniques to teach and study languages and cultures. The participants will be given some essential “keys” to understanding Russians. As well, this will be an excellent opportunity to learn more about the role of interpreter and translator in the modern society and share the great variety of experiences and initiatives with respect to language and culture learning that international participants will bring to the discussion after the official part.

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