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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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Conference Information



Full Title: Endangered and Lesser Known Languages: Challenges and Responses

      
Short Title: ELKL 2012
Location: Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
Start Date: 11-Oct-2012 - 13-Oct-2012
Contact: Prof. Kavita Rastogi
Meeting Email: click here to access email
Meeting Description: Every language is a repository for the culture and worldview of its speakers. Its grammar and lexicon store the shared experiences of past generations, and through this channel knowledge and beliefs of one generation are transmitted to the next. It confers a sense of identity upon its native speakers. At present there are at least 6000 living languages across the world. Of them, 330 languages have more than one million speakers each and there are about 51 languages with only one speaker each. David Crystal believes that only 4% languages in the world are spoken by 96% of the total world human population and incidentally, only 4% people speak the remaining 96% of the world languages. Gradually these 96% of the world languages spoken by only 4% people are shifting, decaying or dying out.

It must be understood that with the disappearance of any language minor or major / small or big not only the language is lost but also its cultural heritage and its worldview. By allowing languages to die out we are destroying what deserves to be preserved. Responses to this problem include local language maintenance and revival programmes, and language documentation. All over the world linguists are trying to save these languages by documenting them, describing their grammars, preparing dictionaries or working on their revitalization.

In our multilingual and pluricultural country, approximately 380 languages are spoken. It has world’s fourth largest number of languages. Some patches of this vast linguistic expanse are from the group of 96% languages mentioned above and are yet unclassified and are witnessing gradual extinction. Many Indian Linguists are working on these lesser known and/or endangered languages.

Objectives of the Seminar:

Drawing on methods, materials and issues from the diverse linguistic experiences of the participants, the seminar hopes to address the following issues and concerns related to lesser known and/or lesser known language.

- Language documentation
- Typology
- Field linguistics
- Syntax
- Morphology
- Cognitive linguistics
- Language planning and language teaching
- Language identity, maintenance and language shift
- Corpus linguistics
Linguistic Subfield: Applied Linguistics; General Linguistics; Language Documentation; Sociolinguistics; Typology
Subject Language: None
LL Issue: 23.3528


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