What is lost when a language goes silent?

One language vanishes every 14 days.

In the July 2012 issue of National Geographic, an article titled “Vanishing Languages” discusses why so many languages disappear. Numerous questions are raised and discussed in the article, including how culture impacts the formation of languages, how learning a specific language impacts a person’s identity, and why some languages are more preserved than others.

National Geographic also has a program called Enduring Voices which documents and tracks the world’s endangered languages. Currently, over 1,000 languages are considered severely endangered, with more languages approaching that point every year.

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