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Journal Article

The status of the least documented language families in the world


Hammarström,  Harald
Department of Linguistics, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Max Planck Society;

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Hammarström, H. (2010). The status of the least documented language families in the world. Language Documentation and Conservation, 4, 177-212. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10125/4478.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-78D5-E
This paper aims to list all known language families that are not yet extinct and all of whose member languages are very poorly documented, i.e., less than a sketch grammar’s worth of data has been collected. It explains what constitutes a valid family, what amount and kinds of documentary data are sufficient, when a language is considered extinct, and more. It is hoped that the survey will be useful in setting priorities for documentation fieldwork, in particular for those documentation efforts whose underlying goal is to understand linguistic diversity.