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Thursday, 24 September 1936

Senator ARKINS (New South Wales) . - I feel that an auxiliary language for universal usage is essential to that common understanding among nations that may ensure universal peace. Basic English may provide this universal language. The Leader of the Senate (Senator Pearce) made quotations from that wonderful work, The Shape of Things toCome, by H. G. Wells, in which the author foresees the state of the world in the year 2020. Senator Pearce described the author as a visionary, and said that the adoption and use of a universal language, even if it be basic English, would take a great number of years. Mr. Wells forecasts that, a century hence, the hundreds of millions of people of the world will be employing a universal tongue. To-day, those people are talking hundreds of tongues. There is nothing out of perspective in Wells's vision, and if that great thinker believes that all the wonderful things which he forecasts in his book shall come to pass within a hundred years, it is not too much for us to expect that a common language is within the realm of attainment within a very much shorter space of time.

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