International Education Journal

WCCES Commission 6 Special Congress Issue


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Losing cultural diversity in Europe?

Tomeu Quetgles-Pons
University of the Balearic Islands, Mallorca



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The paper deals with the evolution and present situation of some European languages, whose speakers have become minorities in their own homeland, and are threatened with extinction. The factors that have led these languages to their present status are explored. Special attention is paid to the role school systems have played and still play to replace those indigenous or historical languages with State official languages. New issues like immigration and globalisation are considered in order to discover their effects, positive or negative, in the conservation of those languages and the cultures related to them. These European experiences could be compared with those from other regions around the world and be used as a warning of the danger of losing cultural diversity through the extinction of indigenous or historical languages.

Language, language extinction, transmission, education, globalisation



Quetgles-Pons, T. (2001) Losing cultural diversity in Europe?. International Education Journal, 2 (5), 126-137.

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