English Today

Original Article

English as a Lingua Franca: form follows function

Alessia Cogo


In this paper I wish to respond to the article published in ET94 by Saraceni while at the same time providing some clarifications concerning the concept of English as a Lingua Franca (henceforth ELF). In his article Saraceni raises three main questions (and a number of related debatable comments which I will quickly deal with in my final remarks) regarding: 1) the nature of ELF and its speakers, 2) the relationship between ELF and the World Englishes (henceforth WE) paradigm, and 3) the distinction between form and function. I will address each of these questions, and in so doing consider a number of notions concerning the ELF research field.


ALESSA COGO is a lecturer at King's College, London, UK