This book "asserts that the origin and spread of languages must be examined primarily through the time-tested techniques of linguistic analysis, rather than those of evolutionary biology" and "defends traditional practices in historical linguistics while remaining open to new techniques, including computational methods" and "will appeal to readers interested in world history and world geography."
All over the world there are children who learn one (or more) language at home and then have to learn another language when they attend school. In some cases this is because children come from immigrant backgrounds; in other cases children come from indigenous communities in countries which have been colonised. This book illustrates the linguistic diversity that can be found in such communities. It examines a wide range of factors which relate to the divergence between home and school language for children growing up in indigenous multilingual communities.
Children's Language and Multilingualism explains concisely and clearly why educators, health specialists, government bodies and politicians need to understand the importance of these differences for children’s social and linguistic development, particularly in relation to education and social policy. Never far from the surface are the well-documented benefits of bi- and multilingualism in education nationally and internationally. This accessible survey of the linguistic issues facing children growing up in indigenous communities will be of interest to advanced students and researchers of multilingualism and language acquisition.