Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts, BA




World Languages & Cultural Studies Department

Faculty Advisor

Barbara Abrams


The term Lingua Franca can be dated back to the Middle Ages, where the “Frankish language” was a French-and-Italian-based jargon spoken between crusaders and traders in the Eastern Mediterranean to optimize communication through a common tongue. Today, English is the Lingua Franca of Europe and, just like the Lingua Franca of the Middle Ages, optimizes communication between those in a culturally and linguistically rich continent.

English- due to several historical reasons, including the internationalization of Europe following World War II, competitive economic world powers, such as the United States, the expansion of the internet, among others- has proven to be practical and beneficial in modern Europe. English has become the language of science and business, creating several motivational factors for the language to be taught from a very young age in hope for professional, academic, and economic success in adulthood.

This thesis investigates the reasons for the recent, rapid growth of English speakers and proficiency levels in Europe, as well as present and future implications of linguistic homogenization.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.