European minority languages: endangered or revived?

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A diagnosis is offered of language learning factors that contribute to the revival of European minority languages. In this paper four frameworks will be discussed. The theory of Reversing Language Shift (Fishman 1991, 2001). The "family-home-neighborhoodcommunity-nexus” is the central stage for language learning in the GIDS-scale of degrees of „disruption‟ of minority language communities. The Euromosaic study (Nelde, Strubell and Williams 1996), is a comparative study of minority language groups in the European Union. It offers a theoretical framework which gives a central place to reproduction and production of language groups through language learning as first and as second language. An important outcome is the ranking of language groups. The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages of the Council of Europe (1998). The Charter provides a formal division into social fields which are relevant for the promotion of learning of minority languages. The Unesco Ad hoc expert group on language endangerment (2003) has proposed a set of nine factors to assess the vitality of a particular threatened language, where continued language learning is of crucial importance. These four approaches will be compared on the dimension of language learning.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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