A study of language death and revival with a particular focus on Manx Gaelic

by Simon Ager

The fortunes of languages can rise and fall and are intimately linked to the fortunes of their speakers. Relatively few languages are becoming increasingly widely-spoken in the world today and it is becoming more and more difficult for smaller languages to survive. However prospects for smaller languages are not entirely gloomy and a number have been successfully revived or revitalised, and initiatives are underway to do the same for other languages.

Themes of language death and revival are explored in this dissertation, with a particular focus on the Manx language. It contains information from Manx speakers, learners and others involved with the language, as well as information from the literature.

This dissertation aims to answer the following questions:

Read the dissertation (PDF format, 517K)

About the Author

Simon Ager, the author of Omniglot, wrote this dissertation in 2009 as part of his MA in Linguistics at Bangor University in Wales.

Here's a video of a talk I did on the subject of language death and revival at the Polyglot Gathering in Berlin in June 2014.

Information about Manx | Phrases | Numbers | Colours | Family words | Colours | Time | Idioms | Proverbs | Terms of endearment | Comparison of Celtic languages | Celtic cognates | Celtiadur | Songs | Tower of Babel | The decline and revival of Manx | My podcast about Manx | Links | Learning materials


Writing systems | Language and languages | Language learning | Pronunciation | Learning vocabulary | Language acquisition | Motivation and reasons to learn languages | Arabic | Basque | Celtic languages | Chinese | English | Esperanto | French | German | Greek | Hebrew | Indonesian | Italian | Japanese | Korean | Latin | Portuguese | Russian | Sign Languages | Spanish | Swedish | Other languages | Minority and endangered languages | Constructed languages (conlangs) | Reviews of language courses and books | Language learning apps | Teaching languages | Languages and careers | Being and becoming bilingual | Language and culture | Language development and disorders | Translation and interpreting | Multilingual websites, databases and coding | History | Travel | Food | Other topics | Spoof articles | How to submit an article


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