Lingua Francas for the New Millennium
At the time of writing the first edition of this book (from 2001 to 2003) the United States was the only superpower. The bi-polarity of the Cold War had vanished. Russia and Eastern Europe were reinventing themselves. The so-called ‘developing’ world was struggling to recover from a number of financial crises (Thailand 1997; Indonesia 1997; Argentina 2002). Only the European Union, which expanded its political dimension in the Maastricht (1992), Amsterdam (1997) and Nice (2001) Treaties and introduced a single currency, the Euro (1999/2002), seemed as if it might be a global player, if not actually able to mount a challenge to US dominance. The West felt itself to be in the ascendancy, exhibited a certain triumphalism1 and this provoked resentment. English, the medium through which Anglo-Saxon hegemony was enacted, also caused irritation. The situation was as documented in Chapter 7.
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