Hey, Polyglots! Endangered Languages Need Your Help!

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rdearman
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Hey, Polyglots! Endangered Languages Need Your Help!

Postby rdearman » Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:00 pm

Couple of people asked about this talk when I was at the Gathering. Thought you might like to know it has been published.

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Lollygagging Podcast available on iTunes

David27
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Re: Hey, Polyglots! Endangered Languages Need Your Help!

Postby David27 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 1:38 am

Thank you for posting. I enjoyed listening to his experience and perspective with endangered languages (Q and A was also very good at the end).So in conclusion the biggest thing polyglots and language enthusiasts can do for endangered languages is raise awareness? I didn’t take away a lot that polyglots can do that is actually productive for endangered languages.
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nooj
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Re: Hey, Polyglots! Endangered Languages Need Your Help!

Postby nooj » Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:50 am

David27 wrote:So in conclusion the biggest thing polyglots and language enthusiasts can do for endangered languages is raise awareness? I didn’t take away a lot that polyglots can do that is actually productive for endangered languages.


Polyglots and language enthusiasts don't bring any skill that is usable for language revitalisation by virtue of being polyglots or language enthusiasts. That's not to say that they can't help at all, but it's just not really related to the sheer fact of being interested in languages or being able to speak many.

The speaker mentions important things, like encouraging language enthusiasts to become language professionals. That is, change career paths to become linguists and thereby acquire the skills and training to help in language documentation. And I suppose a language enthusiast would be more likely to take this leap than someone who has no initial interest in language at all.

If we're taking about raising awareness, an Instagram fashion influencer can do this quite effectively. A fashion influencer who can reach an audience of millions of people who have never thought about the issue before, now that is someone I want on my side. Let's get an episode of Oprah dedicated to the issue.

This message of 'Hey, Polyglots! Endangered Languages Need Your Help!' is valid for all people.

Hey sportspeople, endangered languages need your help!
Hey congressmen and women, endangered languages need your help!
Hey software developers, endangered languages need your help!
Hey soybean farming conglomerates, endangered languages need your help! (Stop cutting down forests and pushing indigenous people out of their homelands!)
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sporedandroid
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Re: Hey, Polyglots! Endangered Languages Need Your Help!

Postby sporedandroid » Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:58 am

Like the talk said, I think shame is a big factor. Growing up I felt very uneasy speaking Spanish with my family in public. I felt like everyone stared at me. Even if people liked that I spoke Spanish it felt very othering. I can’t imagine what it would be like to speak an actual minority language. Maybe giving kids more opportunities to speak their minority language with peers would help keep those languages alive.
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