Of the 6,900 languages spoken in the world, some 2,500 are endangered, the UN’s cultural agency UNESCO said Thursday as it released its latest atlas of world languages.
That represents a multi-fold increase from the last atlas compiled in 2001 which listed 900 languages threatened with extinction.
Australian linguist Christopher Moseley, who headed the atlas’ team of 25 experts, noted that countries with rich linguistic diversity like India and the United States are also facing the greatest threat of language extinction.
UNESCO deputy director Francoise Riviere applauded government efforts to support linguistic diversity but added that “people have to be proud to speak their language” to ensure it thrives.
Thrust everyone together into corporate nation-states, reward mass appeal behavior, and suddenly… diversity dies and we all become generic gray people.
Those witty, hip urban types always tell you that’s a paranoid vision but yet, here’s more of the ongoing proof. But they don’t notice, do they?