Languages Matter

In recent times, there has been a renewed interest in languages undergoing endangerment. Year 2008 being the international year of languages, has put sharper limelight on the plight of these languages. We must be aware here that centuries of our ignorance and marginalization has not only resulted in death of hundreds of these languages but also in the loss of the precious bio-cultural heritage accumulated over several thousands of years. Disciplines of Language documentation and language revitalization has emerged  as a response to this problem.  There has been some new developments recently on this front. UNESCO has been engaged in preparation of a new atlas of the endangered languages of the world.

The project is UNESCO’s Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger.

This project has been given shape under the leadership of renowned linguist Dr Chris Mosley. Norwegian Government has played a considerable role in this project by being a major fund giver.

Visit this website for more information

Recently Center for Linguistics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi organized and hosted an enlightening seminar focused on ‘Language Archiving in the 21st Century‘ (27th October 2009). The seminar was attended by Dr.Chris Mosley (UNESCO), Dr Peter Austin (SOAS London), Dr Anvita Abbi (JNU, Chief Organizer and chairperson), Dr Pramod K Pandey (JNU organizer), Dr K Subbarao (Delhi University), Dr Girish Nath Jha (JNU), Dr Veneeta Dayal (Rutgers University), Dr Chaitra Puttaswamy(IIT Kanpur), Ms Kalika Bali (Microsoft Research), Dr Ayesha Kidwai (JNU organizer), Dr Shreenathan (Dravidian University, Kuppam), Mr Pramod Kumar (JNU), Dr Gail Coelho (Australia), Mr Abhishek Avtans (CIH, Agra) and Mr Mayank Jain among others. The seminar was followed by a sumptmous dinner hosted by Center for Linguistics for participants and language lovers at JNU cafeteria.

Prior to seminar day Prof Peter Austin delivered a special public talk on the state of Linguistics and Language Documentation (26th October 2009) at JNU Campus

To view the detailed program of the seminar click below

Program_Language Archiving in the 21st Century