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Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Subject:||Languages spoken only as second languages.|
|Question:||My psychology professor stated that of the 200+ languages spoken in the USA; 176 are living languages, “3 are second languages without mother tongue speakers” and 52 are extinct. When I asked her which three were second languages only, she didn’t know the answer and challenged me to find out. I’ve spent the past day and a half searching the web and I’m still stumped. Please help.|
|Reply:||I have a bigger problem with your professor's statement. If 52 languages are truly extinct, how can they said to be spoken in the US? To add to Dr. Pyatt's statement, there is work by Nancy Dorian on what she calls "semi-linguals", people who have passive knowledge of a language (such as an immigrant language) but who don't actually speak it themselves.|
|Reply From:||Susan D Fischer click here to access email|