Almost half of the roughly 6,900 languages spoken around the world today are endangered. Scarily, the rate of extinction is accelerating and there is a whole lot at stake.
Communities around the world are losing their indigenous tongue at an unprecedented rate. The grimmest predictions suggest up to 90% of the world’s languages will have disappeared by the end of this century.
A language becomes extinct when its last native speaker dies, and it’s usually the result of its speakers shifting to a lingua franca like English, Arabic or Spanish. This implies choice, but it’s often a history of marginalisation that leads to the change.
See the full article by Lauren Johnson at the NITV site