This book makes an important contribution to the growing debate on linguistic human rights. By bringing together research on language rights, language 'survival' and minority language planning in specific contexts from Africa, Asia, Central and North America and Europe, it aims to illustrate how current conceptualizations of language rights can sometimes stand in the way of their successful realization.
The book considers such theoretical and practical issues as: the constitution of ethnic identities and their links with language; relations between language, politics and power; language ecology and revitalization movements; the dominance of particular models of language, their appropriateness to particular contexts and their relationship to speakers' own perceptions. It is targeted towards a wide readership in the fields of sociology, sociolinguistics and anthropology, language rights law, and language policy and planning.
Jane Freeland is a Visiting Research Fellow in the School of Humanities, Southampton University, UK. She has written and published extensively on the development of language rights and language policy in Nicaragua's multiethnic, multilingual Caribbean Coast region since the Sandinista revolution, and on their significance for the language rights debate.
Donna Patrick is Associate Professor in the Department of Canadian Studies and the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario. Her current research focuses on language use in a Northern Quebec Inuit community. Her recent publications have investigated issues of language, politics, and social interaction in this region and sociolinguistic aspects of minority language maintenance and in second and third language acquisition.