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Workshop on the Languages of Papua 2
Melanesian Languages on the Edge of Asia:
These languages are astonishingly diverse, barely known to science, and face the threat of extinction without trace in the coming century unless concerted international efforts are made to meet the huge challenge of documenting them. This conference addresses the scientific issues raised by these languages. The scientific part of the program will cover the whole gamut of linguistic questions from phonology to syntax to typology to historical linguistics, as well as topics bordering musicology, anthropology and prehistory, plus papers on digital archiving, documentary linguistics, scientific infrastructure and the training of linguists from minority language groups.
Besides the scientific questions, the theoretical recognition of cultural and linguistic rights of minority groups in Indonesia, Timor Leste and Papua New Guinea faces enormous practical difficulties if it is to be realised, as national governments have indicated they wish, as education programs that allow children to receive part of their schooling in their mother-tongue.
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Page last modified: 23 Jan 2010, Leipzig