Why Preserving Language Through Interpretation Services is More Important Than Ever - Speak Your Language | Australia

GET a Quote




Live Chat

Why Preserving Language Through Interpretation Services is More Important Than Ever

Why Preserving Language Through Interpretation Services is More Important Than Ever

Posted on: May 26, 2024 by admin

Language is not just about the convenience of communication — it is a complex system where culture, identity and knowledge intertwine. Take English, for example, today it is the world’s common language, used by native and non-native speakers. While in theory, it may seem logical for everyone to switch to speaking English for coherence and efficiency, over 7000 languages (across 195 countries) continue to be spoken. This reveals the incredible diversity of human expression and the connections between language and culture. Yet, this number is dropping rapidly, and in our changing global landscape many languages today are facing extinction. In this blog, we’ll explore why preserving languages through interpretation services is crucial to maintaining a collective identity and creating a sense of belonging in the modern world. 

Cultural Diversity 

Each language embodies unique traditions, beliefs, and narratives that have evolved over centuries. When a language disappears, cultural insights and practices can fade too. Interpretation services enable the transmission of this cultural diversity across generations and help communities retain their identity amidst globalisation. Think about a global corporation, for instance. Clear communication facilitated by business interpretation services may foster better collaboration among diverse teams in this company. This can lead to enhanced creativity and innovation as different viewpoints and ideas are shared and integrated. Likewise, if this company sells their product to diverse customer bases, interpretation services can enable personalised and effective customer engagement, focused on their cultural beliefs and values.

Identity and Sense of Belonging 

Cultures can be categorised as collectivist or individualist. Collectivist cultures emphasise the importance of community and group identity over individual identity, whereas individualist cultures prioritise personal goals, achievements, and individual rights over the group or community. Interestingly, these values are often highlighted in language. For example, in collectivist Japanese culture, language includes honorifics that emphasise respect for others and social hierarchy. These linguistic features reflect the importance of maintaining harmony and social cohesion within the group. Conversely, in individualist German cultures language often prioritises directness and clarity, reflecting the value placed on individual expression and assertiveness. As you can imagine, a conversation between these two cultures translated into English could result in misunderstandings or even offence. Certified interpreters, however, understand the nuances between these languages, translating them both ways to guarantee mutual understanding and respect. They play a critical role in preserving the integrity of cultural identities while enabling meaningful interactions. 

Knowledge Preservation

Languages are vessels of knowledge accumulated over generations. They encode traditional practices, ecological wisdom, medicinal insights, and more. In Chinese culture, for example, Traditional Chinese Medicine is deeply rooted in language, with terms and concepts that encapsulate centuries of understanding about health and wellness. Understanding such knowledge is crucial not only for cultural continuity but also for the practical benefits it offers. Therefore, medical interpreting can be tricky and requires a professional to facilitate effective communication between practitioners, patients, and healthcare providers. It requires a unique blend of linguistic proficiency, cultural sensitivity, and medical understanding to bridge the gap between languages and medical systems. Acknowledging the rich cultural heritage embedded in language and traditional practices ultimately ensures respectful patient care.

Family Connection

In Australia, just over 22 per cent of people used a language other than English at home in 2021. This shows that despite English being the de facto national language of Australia, almost a quarter of families choose to maintain diverse linguistic traditions and practices within their households. Many migrant families maintain their native language as a way to pass down cultural heritage and strengthen familial bonds. For instance, grandparents who speak a language other than English often share stories, values, and traditions with grandchildren, ensuring that the family’s cultural roots are preserved across generations. On-demand interpreting services empower individuals within these families to engage confidently in broader society while maintaining their cultural and linguistic identities at home. In educational settings, interpretation services can bridge the gap between home and school, enabling parents or carers with limited English proficiency to actively participate in their child’s education.

Cognitive Benefits

Research suggests that bilingualism or multilingualism has cognitive benefits, such as enhanced memory, problem-solving skills, and multitasking abilities. Preserving languages and promoting multilingualism can therefore have positive effects on individual cognitive development and brain health. In light of these cognitive advantages, supporting language diversity and promoting multilingualism through interpretation services becomes an investment in cognitive health and lifelong learning. By valuing and preserving diverse languages, we foster cognitive resilience and equip individuals with the cognitive tools necessary to thrive in an increasingly complex and interconnected global landscape.

Social Justice and Human Rights

Language preservation is also a matter of social justice and human rights. Many marginalised communities face linguistic discrimination, leading to the suppression or erasure of their languages entirely. Protecting linguistic rights ensures that all individuals can express themselves in their native tongues and participate fully in society without discrimination. This is particularly pertinent for communities such as the Deaf community of Australia, who identify as a cultural and linguistic minority group. Auslan interpretation services ensure equal access to communication, education, employment, and public services for these citizens. Without adequate interpretation services, Deaf, Deafblind, hard-of-hearing people and others in this community face significant barriers to accessing essential information and participating fully in various aspects of society.


Preserving languages has far-reaching implications for culture, identity, knowledge and well-being. As the world continues to evolve through globalisation and rapid technological advancements, the need to protect linguistic and cultural diversity has never been more relevant. By valuing and preserving language, we acknowledge the importance of individual expression and pave the way for a more inclusive future. Keen to be a part of this change? For professional, quality interpreters who are committed to preserving languages across Australia, you can trust companies like Speak Your Language. Contact us today for interpretation services that make a difference.