Puma is one of the 123 languages spoken in Nepal. It belongs to the Kiranti group of the Tibeto-Burman branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family. Puma is endangered, as it is spoken mostly by adults that also regularly use another language – the national language Nepali and/or another Kiranti language, Bantawa or Chamling. However, according to the 2001 national census the number of speakers was 4,310, but the newest census of 2011 registered 6,686 speakers.
What makes a language vulnerable, what makes a language safe? Read more about it in Chapter 8 of the Book of Knowledge!
FURTHER INFORMATION AND RESOURCES
DoBeS Chintang and Puma project: http://www.mpi.nl/DOBES/projects/chintang. This site contains some information on the language and culture, photographs and a short audio recording as sample. The Puma corpus in the DoBeS archive offers more information and many resources accessible for unregistered users.
See photos from a Puma village at this gallery:
- How many other languages of Nepal are endangered? Find out here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_endangered_languages_in_Nepal
- Here you can read and download a booklet published by UNESCO on Diversity and Endangerment of Languages in Nepal: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0013/001399/139952m.pdf