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ERIC Number: ED209357
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1981
Pages: 36
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Measurement of Language Diversity.
Brougham, James
Accepting that language diversity is functionally related to other variables characterizing human societies, much discussion stems from the advantages or disadvantageous nature of language diversity in terms of national development and national unity. To discover ways of measuring language diversity would help, in part, to solve the language diversity issue; however, the lack of consistency and agreement in the definition of the two viewpoints hampers the language planners. Bearing in mind that any language diversity measure takes into consideration all languages present and considers the numbers of users of the languages, the coupling of these two independent variables renders the elimination of all ambiguity impossible in a diversity measure. For example, a society bearing a large number of languages with widely differing numbers of users will have the same diversity measurement as one characterized by a smaller number of languages but greater evenness of user distribution. The diversity measurement must be related to both the number of languages and the degree of evenness of user distribution. Using indices and equation models of the research of language planners, this document sets out to define properties which a language diversity index should exhibit, using both sample and census data. (Author/CE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Laval Univ., Quebec (Quebec). International Center for Research on Bilingualism.