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Vanishing Voices: The Extinction of the Worlds Languages

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  • 256 Seiten
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Half of all known languages have disappeared in the last five hundred years and 90% of all languages are in danger of becoming ext... Weiterlesen
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Beschreibung

Half of all known languages have disappeared in the last five hundred years and 90% of all languages are in danger of becoming extinct during the next century. The loss of both linguistic and biological diversity is part of a much larger and more serious problem - the near-total collapse of our worldwide ecosystem. Romaine and Nettle describe the background of this situation, how the current catastrophe occurred, and what can be done about it.

Autorentext

Daniel Nettle is the author The Fyem Language of Northern Nigeria and Linguistic Diversity (OUP). Suzanne Romaine is Merton Professor of English Language at the University of Oxford and is the author of Language in Society: An Introduction to Sociolinguistics (OUP). Vanishing Voices was awarded the 2001 Book of the Year Award from the British Association of Applied Linguistics.



Klappentext

Few people know that nearly one hundred native languages once spoken in what is now California are near extinction, or that most of Australia's 250 aboriginal languages have vanished. In fact, at least half of the world's languages may die out in the next century. Daniel Nettle and Suzanne Romaine assert that this trend is far more than simply disturbing. Making explicit the link between language survival and environmental issues, they argue that the extinction of languages is part of the larger picture of near-total collapse of the worldwide ecosystem. Indeed, the authors contend that the struggle to preserve precious environmental resources-such as the rainforest-cannot be separated from the struggle to maintain diverse cultures, and that the causes of language death, like that of ecological destruction, lie at the intersection of ecology and politics. In addition to defending the world's endangered languages, the authors also pay homage to the last speakers of dying tongues, such as Red Thundercloud, a Native American in South Carolina; Ned Mandrell, with whom the Manx language passed away in 1974; and Arthur Bennett, an Australian who was the last person to know more than a few words of Mbabaram. In our languages lies the accumulated knowledge of humanity. Indeed, each language is a unique window on experience. Vanishing Voices is a call to preserve this resource, before it is too late.



Zusammenfassung
Few people know that nearly 100 native languages once spoken in what is now California are near extinction, or that most of Australias 250 aboriginal languages have vanished. In fact, at least half of the worlds languages may die out in the next century. What has happened to these voices? Should we be alarmed about the disappearance of linguistic diversity? The authors of Vanishing Voices assert that this trend is far more than simply disturbing. Making explicit the link between language survival and environmental issues, they argue that the extinction of languages is part of the larger picture of near-total collapse of the worldwide ecosystem. Indeed, the authors contend that the struggle to preserve precious environmental resources-such as the rainforest-cannot be separated from the struggle to maintain diverse cultures, and that the causes of language death, like that of ecological destruction, lie at the intersection of ecology and politics. And while Nettle and Romaine defend the worlds endangered languages, they also pay homage to the last speakers of dying tongues, such as Red Thundercloud, a Native American in South Carolina, Ned Mandrell, with whom the Manx language passed away in 1974, and Arthur Bennett, an Australian, the last person to know more than a few words of Mbabaram. In our languages lies the accumulated knowledge of humanity. Indeed, each language is a unique window on experience. Vanishing Voices is a call to preserve this resource, before it is too late.

Produktinformationen

Titel: Vanishing Voices: The Extinction of the Worlds Languages
Untertitel: The Extinction of the World's Languages
Autor:
EAN: 9780198031185
ISBN: 978-0-19-803118-5
Digitaler Kopierschutz: Adobe-DRM
Format: E-Book (pdf)
Herausgeber: Oxford University Press
Genre: Geisteswissenschaften, Kunst, Musik
Anzahl Seiten: 256
Veröffentlichung: 27.07.2000
Jahr: 2000
Untertitel: Englisch