[lg policy] Cross-border & "national" languages, Ethnologue, and Africa

Thu Dec 5 16:25:29 UTC 2013

FYI, I've just posted the second of two blog articles on Ethnologue and Africa that may interest some.

The first considers the significance of "cross border languages" in Africa, and notes Ethnologue's longstanding categorization of such languages as being of a single country, but spoken in others:


In the larger picture, I think cross-border languages present some interesting challenges and possibilities for language planning and policy, and a few prominent people in Africa have been among those who have noted that.

The second deals with the problematic category of "national language," which many African countries use one way, and Ethnologue (with a lot of company) use in another way. I also mention Conrad Brann's  work on this topic:


Don Osborn, PhD

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