Endangered Languages and Languages in Danger

Issues of documentation, policy, and language rights

| University of East Anglia
| University of Koblenz-Landau
ISBN 9789027258342 | EUR 99.00 | USD 149.00
e-Book Open Access
ISBN 9789027266446

This peer-reviewed collection brings together the latest research on language endangerment and language rights. It creates a vibrant, interdisciplinary platform for the discussion of the most pertinent and urgent topics central to vitality and equality of languages in today’s globalised world. The novelty of the volume lies in the multifaceted view on the variety of dangers that languages face today, such as extinction through dwindling speaker populations and lack of adequate preservation policies or inequality in different social contexts (e.g. access to justice, education and research resources). There are examples of both loss and survival, and discussion of multiple factors that condition these two different outcomes. We pose and answer difficult questions such as whether forced interventions in preventing loss are always warranted or indeed viable. The emerging shared perspective is that of hope to inspire action towards improving the position of different languages and their speakers through research of this kind.

Publishing status: Available

For any use beyond this license, please contact the publisher at rights@benjamins.nl.

Table of Contents
Introduction: Endangered languages and languages in danger
Luna Filipović and Martin Pütz
Section 1
North-South relations in linguistic science: Collaboration or colonialism?
Colette Grinevald and Chris Sinha
Indigenous language policies in Brazil: Training indigenous people as teachers and researchers
Ana Suelly Arruda Câmara Cabral, Wany Bernardete de Araujo Sampaio and Vera da Silva Sinha
Language rights in danger: Access to justice and linguistic (in)equality in multilingual judicial contexts
Liz Hales and Luna Filipović
Towards language planning for sign languages: Measuring endangerment and the treatment of British Sign Language
Jill Jones
A cost-and-benefit approach to language loss
Salikoko S. Mufwene
Section 2
Language documentation 20 years on
Peter Austin
The brief existence of Saipan Carolinian: A study of a vanishing language storing valuable linguistic and historical insights on the tongue of its speakers
S. James Ellis
Aikanã and Kwaza: Their ethno-historical and sociolinguistic context in Rondônia, Brazil
Hein van der Voort
Metaphors of an endangered forest people, the Yanomae (N. Brazil)
Gale Goodwin Gómez
Measuring and understanding ethnolinguistic vitality in Papapana
Ellen Smith
Section 3
The art of losing: Beyond java, patois and postvernacular vitality – Repositioning the periphery in global Asian ecologies
Lisa Lim
Reacting to language endangerment: The Akie of north-central Tanzania
Bernd Heine, Christa König and Karsten Legere
Language transmission and use in a bilingual setting in rural Tanzania: Findings from an in-depth study of Ngoni
Tove Rosendal
Language shift and endangerment in urban and rural East Africa: Three case studies
Maik Gibson and B. Araali Bagamba
Redefining priorities, methods and standards in endangered-language lexicography: From lexical erosion in Palikur to areal lexicography
François Nemo and Antonia Cristinoi
Jewish language varieties: Loss and survival
Bernard Spolsky
“This collection of papers brings together world-class established scholars and rising stars from a range of language-related disciplines to address key issues in the field of endangered language studies. The book includes a wide range of geographical contexts including Africa, South America, Asia and the Middle East. It does not shy away from discussing issues of language rights, inequality and injustice, as well as language communities’ responses to both endangerment and dominant research paradigms. The papers include not only standard documentary and descriptive linguistics, but also ecology-focused approaches which take into account social and cultural factors as well as language contact. Rather than simply jumping on a fashionable bandwagon, however, the book examines assumptions and issues within ecological approaches to language endangerment and maintenance. It also juxtaposes a ‘rationalist’ instrumental approach with ‘romantic’ viewpoints which link languages, identities, and self-expression. Relationships between these theoretical models and linguistic usage are also examined. I recommend this book especially for early-career researchers and students who want an overview of the wide range of scholarship in this field.”
“This volume is a welcome addition to the fast-growing literature on language endangerment. The editors have collected a set of excellent papers that cover the most important areas of the general topic: causes of and responses to language endangerment; language documentation and revitalization; the interconnected issues of ideology, language policy, and language rights; and issues in assessing language vitality. An especially appealing feature of the book is its coverage of case studies from widely varying locations and situations – British Sign Language, languages of Oceania and of the Amazon, several East African languages, and Jewish languages. This feature sets the book apart from most previous books on endangered languages. The book also includes papers with a broader perspective on major issues in this field, among them the role(s) of colonialism and colonial languages in language endangerment, the emergence of the field of documentary linguistics, and even the question of whether language death should be considered a problem. The book should be of interest to general readers concerned about language endangerment as well as scholars.”
Cited by

Cited by 1 other publications

Swiggers, Pierre
2020. Bibliographie linguistique de l’année 2016 et complément des années précédentes / Linguistic Bibliography for the Year 2016 and supplement for previous years. Historiographia Linguistica 47:1  pp. 120 ff. Crossref logo

This list is based on CrossRef data as of 27 april 2021. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.

Subjects & Metadata
BIC Subject: CFB – Sociolinguistics
BISAC Subject: LAN009050 – LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / Sociolinguistics
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2016030381 | Marc record