The rapid endangerment and death of many minority languages across the world is a matter of widespread concern, not only among linguists and anthropologists but among all interested in the issues of cultural identity in an increasingly globalized culture. A leading commentator and popular writer on language issues, David Crystal asks the fundamental question, "Why is language death so important?", reviews the reasons for the current crisis, and investigates what is being done to reduce its impact. By some counts, only 600 of the 6,000 or so languages in the world are "safe" from the threat of extinction. By some reckonings, the world will, by the end of the twenty-first century, be dominated by a small number of major languages. Language Death
provides a stimulating and accessible account of this crisis, brimming with salutary and thought-provoking facts and figures about a phenomenon whichlike the large-scale destruction of the environmentis both peculiarly modern and increasingly global. The book contains not only intelligent argument, but moving description of the decline and demise of particular languages, and practical advice for anyone interested in pursuing the subject further.
About the Author:
David Crystal has written extensively on language. An internationally renowned writer, journal editor, lecturer, and broadcaster on language matters, and formerly Professor of Linguistics at the University of Reading, David Crystal lives with his family in Wales.