Discuss role of language in culture Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

Discuss role of language in culture Case Study Solution


Language is a mode of communication that helps individuals and group of people to interact with each other. It is not only restricted to verbal communication, but it also includes non-verbal communication including gesture, postures, symbols, and facial expressions. Language in a broad senseis a combination of sounds, symbols that are used to communicate within a group or outside a group.

The role of language in culture is imperative given that it is a mode of communication and culture is sum of knowledge, habitual behavior patterns, and attitudes that different groups have in the society. Meanwhile, culture without language is not a culture because the culture is a set of beliefs, values, norms, and standards that are transmitted from generation to generation through mode of communication which is language. Language is used to preserve those values and traditions within the groups.

Language is a natural phenomenon that is used consciously or unconsciously by all living creatures. A deaf might not be able to hear, but he naturally talks with other deaf and their status of being deaf also do not interrupt their communication. They cannot listen to each other, but they are able to communicate with each other effectivelylike normal people interacting without any problem.

Cultural differences are transmitted through language, and it is a tool to transfer the knowledge of culture including traditions, values and norms. If you cannot understand “Shab bakhair” then it is right to admit that language and culture are intertwined. They are closely connected with each other that forms a mode of communication.

Origin of language

The origin of language is not clear for mankind to understand how the first communication of mankind formed the shape of language as tool for their interaction. There are many hypothesis, and theories that place different assumptions for the origin of language. The ‘pooh-pooh’ theory defines it as, it started as humans’ natural responses to pain, fear, surprise, and other emotions such as laughing and crying. The theory further claims that these sounds helped mankind to create language so that they can interact in their daily life.

It is also argued that if the sounds of natural responses helped them to create the language, then all types of animals have similar natural sounds so why they have not completed a language since million years. Furthermore, many theories are presented to claim how language was created, and formed as mode of communication, and what is the origin of language. The ta-ta theory is also presented to claim speech came from the tongue and mouth’s gesture that created words, and words to speech.

It is also argued that many words are spoken without characteristic gestures as presented in the ta-ta theory. Many theories are presented by many linguistics, and anthropologists, these are just hypothesis that could be right or wrong, but they have failed on logical grounds.However, many societies believe that language is the gift of God to mankind. The largest religion on earth explains it as Bible says Genesis 2:20“So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds in the sky and all the wild animals. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.”

Similarly, the second largest religion Islam says Quran Al-Baqarah 2:31“And He taught Adam the names - all of them. Then He showed them to the angels and said, "Inform Me of the names of these, if you are truthful.” These evidences are presented that language is a gift of God to mankind to enable them to interact and communicate with each other in their daily lives.

Furthermore, the origin of language is unknown to mankind, and theories and claims are also rejected on logical grounds. But, the claims that language is a gift of God is something that looks fine and logical if we analyze the creation of the universe and mankind. So, language is universal tool to interact with each other, but type of language might differ as per geographical locations, and cultural differences. The language is the mode of communication for many of us to interact with others in our daily life activities.


The culture is a central concept that cannot be attributed to genetic inheritance because the culture consists of norms, values, traditions, and standards that differ from one society to another. The culture is defined in two ways; capacity of human to classify and representation of experiences with symbols, and act in different way within the society. Secondly, it is the different way of living within the society with different experiences with difference in artifacts created by group’s culture.

The word culture is not a name of traditions but it is a sum of knowledge, experiences, norms, values, standards, symbols, traditions, rituals, and ethics. The culture is a very complex term to understand because it consists of many aspects of human life. Meanwhile, these aspects also differ from one group to another, and also differ by geographical locations. The culture is not itself a standard or identity, but it is also argued that culture represents the religion in some extents because of periodic revelations.............

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