Thematic Introduction: Protecting Endangered Minority Languages: Sociolinguistic Perspectives

Eda Derhemi

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Abstract

This issue is devoted to problems of endangered languages spoken by minorities, focusing on the sociolinguistic study of the causes, circumstances and results of endangerment, and other structural and social processes related to endangered languages and to their survival. It analyses aspects of the loss of minority languages, either indigenous or migrant, in the presence of a dominant second language. It investigates the relationship of these languages to previous and current policies, emphasising the positive or negative impact of institutional intervention for the survival of endangered minority languages. It is shown that these languages are often stigmatised and communities of speakers are often marginalised and dominanted populations. Matters of power and control of the speech communities are also discussed, as their role is important in accounting for language endangerment.

Suggested bibliographic reference for this article:

Derhemi, Eda. Thematic Introduction: Protecting Endangered Minority Languages: Sociolinguistic Perspectives. IJMS: International Journal on Multicultural Societies. 2002, vol. 4, no.2, pp. 150-161. UNESCO. ISSN 1817-4574. www.unesco.org/shs/ijms/vol4/issue2/art1

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