Book of Knowledge
Chapters: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
List of all languages referred to in the Book of Knowledge and other sections of the website.
DOWNLOAD and print out the Book of Knowledge.
Go to the Let’s Revise section to see what you can learn from the Book of Knowledge or to test how much you have already learnt!
Do you wish for some phonetic practice? Take a look at the exercises in the Phonetic Exercises section.
- How many languages?
- Where is the greatest number of languages found?
- What is language?
- Is human language different from animal communication?
- Where does language come from?
- How are languages classified?
- Is it good to have so many languages?
2. Exploring Linguistic Diversity
- How different are the languages of the world?
- Languages and LANGUAGE
- The quest for universals
- How can different languages be described and compared?
- Words and their meaning
- Basic vocabulary
- Word meaning and categorization
- Words for the world we live in
- Words in texts
- Words in spoken language
- The inner structure of words
- Techniques for building words and word-forms
- Grammatical categories
- Word order
- Polar questions
- How to express possession
- How to show the structure of words and clauses
7. Multilingualism and language contact
- Everyone has the potential for multilingualism
- How does multilingualism function? Refining the term ‘multilingualism’
- Prestige: Official multilingualism
- Lack of prestige: Situations of unbalanced multilingualism
- Benefits of plurilingualism
- Language contact
- Results of language contact
- Code switching and loan words
- Typology of language endangerment
- Which languages are endangered?
- How do languages become endangered?
- Crowding out
- Language endangerment and death are not uniform
- How do speakers of endangered languages feel about it?
- Why does it matter? How do majority language speakers feel about language endangerment?
9. Endangered Languages, Ethnicity, Identity and Politics
- More than just words and sentences
- Data and metadata
Some methods of language documentation
- Documenting communicative behaviour and language in use
- Documenting what speakers know
Elements of documentary practice
- Preparatory steps
- Recording equipment and session set-up
- Processing and analysing data
- Example on-line archives for endangered languages
- Legal and ethical problems
Let’s Revise! – Interactive Revision Exercises