The IELTS exam (Germany) Task 2 question (April 2011) response recently posted this question from the IELTS exam in Germany:

People in former times used to be more dependent on one another, whereas nowadays they lead a more independent life. Do you agree or disagree?

As you have heard me say before, I love these ‘do you agree or disagree’ questions. They are so simple and straightforward, your essay will practically write itself. (If you are new to essay writing, please take a quick review of my YouTube videos regarding structure). Here is my response to the above question:

The world of today is nothing like the world of several hundred years ago. However, it is curious that the degree to which people need one another to survive appears to have changed very little. It is argued that the people of former times are no more dependent on one another than the people of today. This will be shown by analyzing how both groups depend on one another for life necessities as well as protection.

Firstly, both the people of today and the people of former times depend on others to supply them with the very basics they need for life. For example, in early American settlements, the people who took on trades such as welding, masonry and carpentry depended entirely on farmers to provide them with sustenance. This same arrangement exists today, with farmers feeding workers from a variety of other trades. As can be seen, the people of former times are just as dependent on each other as those of modern times.

Secondly, the security that comes from living in a community is still as intact today as it was in former times. For instance, people who lived during the Middle Ages were completely dependent on the kingdom to which they belonged for protection from aggressive outside forces. In much the same way, the borders and immigration control of today’s modern countries provide stability and protection to modern people. Thus, the level of dependence people have on one another is no different today than it was in former times.

After analyzing how people depend on one another for basics as well as protection, it has been proven that the historical level of dependence one person has on another has not been altered. This codependency between people is expected to remain an inseparable part of human society into the foreseeable future.

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