jeudi 20 décembre 2012

New York, a graveyard for languages (en)

Français: près de 800 langues sont parlées à New York, certaines en voie de disparition.

The five boroughs of New York City are home to speakers of about 800 languages, many of them close to extinction, says Dr. Mark Turin for the BBC :
This is the city with the highest linguistic density in the world and that is mostly because the city draws large numbers of immigrants in almost equal parts from all over the globe - that is unique to New York," says Kaufman.
Several languages have been uttered for the very last time in New York, he says.
There are these communities that are completely gone in their homeland. One of them, the Gottscheers, is a community of Germanic people who were living in Slovenia, and they were isolated from the rest of the Germanic populations.
"They were surrounded by Slavic speakers for several hundreds of years so they really have their own variety [of language] which is now unintelligible to other German speakers.
The last speakers of this language have ended up in Queens, he says, and this has happened to many other communities.