The need to preserve the linguistic human heritage and counter the processes of language shift that are taking place worldwide has become a major concern shared by researchers, scholars and leaders of many language communities.
This Dialogue wanted to bring together all persons interested in the maintenance of linguistic diversity in order to generate fruitful discussions that may be used to hold back the current processes of cultural homogenization of the world.
The congress was held in Barcelona between May 20 and 23 in the framework of the Universal Forum of Cultures – Barcelona 2004. Working sessions were of two types. On the one hand, the keynote communications, that gave a general overview on the three main axes of the congress (language diversity, sustainability and peace) and the possible interrelations among them, taking into account the new cultural, social, political and economic factors stemming from an increasing globalization process. On the other hand, the five parallel workshops that were held in the afternoon sessions had a more specific approach to linguistic diversity and its relation to language policy and planning.
Linguapax was born as a UNESCO initiative to bring a linguistic solution to specific issues in the area of peace research, defence of human rights and promotion of education for democracy by using innovative methods for language teaching. This philosophy is now embodied in the Linguapax Institute, an international NGO based in Barcelona, aimed at promoting peace through the respect of linguistic diversity and the promotion of plurilingual education. The Universal Forum of Cultures – Barcelona 2004 that took place from May 9 to September 26 2004 was an international event intended to offer a new and creative space for reflection and ex-perimentation in relation to the main social and cultural conflicts that humanity is faced with at the outset of the twenty-first century. The convergence of proposals and objectives of these two initiatives motivated the joint organization of this international congress.
Fèlix Martí. President of Linguapax pdf (Catalan)
Elda Moreno. Council of Europe pdf (French)
Pasqual Maragall. President of the Generalitat of Catalonia (Autonomous Goverment) pdf (Catalan)
‘Creating a world of languages’ (pdf)
1. Language diversity
The present situation: the number of languages and the fight against homogenising tendencies and language shift processes. The loss of cultural diversity in general and linguistic diversity in particular as a common phenomenon spread worldwide. The magnitude of the threat and reactions against hegemonic languages. Forecasts over the maintenance of linguistic diversity.
‘Language diversity: a key to understanding human diversity’ (pdf)
The links between language, culture and the environment. Language ecology as an interdisciplinary research area focusing on the relationships between linguistic diversity and biological diversity. The need to preserve a linguistic balance at a global scale. The promotion of multilingual practices in order to reach a more equalitarian coexistence among the different language communities of the world.
‘Linguistic diversity, sustainable development, and the future of the past’ (ppt)
The respect for linguistic diversity based upon harmonious coexistence of all language communities. Linguistic rights, both individual and collective, as fundamental human rights. Linguistic and cultural diversity as a key factor to improve intercultural communication, conflict resolution and the promotion of peace among peoples.
Fernand de Varennes
‘Pax Linguae, Pax Humanus: Linguistics rights as a foundation for peace’ (pdf)
1. Positive models of language policy and planning
Case studies of different linguistic communities and their models of language policy and planning.
Workshop coordinator: Jean-Jacques Van Vlasselaer. Workshop conclusions (pdf)
Anne Marie Beukes
‘The first ten years of democracy: Language policy in South Africa’ (pdf)
‘Logros y retos de la educación bilingüe en el País Vasco’ (pdf),
‘Logros y retos de la educación bilingüe en el País Vasco’ (powerpoint)
Araceli Díaz de Lezana
‘El desarrollo tecnolingüístico del euskera’ (pdf)
‘La planificació lingüística de la llengua de signes catalana (LSC)’ (pdf)
‘The role of the university in meeting the needs of linguistic communities: an Irish case study’ (pdf),
‘The role of the university in meeting the needs of linguistic communities: an Irish case study’ (powerpoint)
‘Revaloriser les langues afin de les promouvoir?’ (pdf)
‘La dimensión global del debate por los derechos lingüísticos en México’ (pdf)
2. Case studies of language revitalization and standardisation
Examples of programmes that aim to revitalize threatened languages. The new information technologies and their use in revitalization strategies. Language description and the importance of both corpus and status planning as key elements in the protection and promotion of languages.
‘Vanishing diversities and submerging identities’ (pdf)
José Antonio Flores Farfán
‘Empoderamiento de las lenguas y culturas locales: ejemplos de México’ (pdf)
‘The role of literacy in language revitalization’ (pdf)
G. Ambrosch, D. Halwachs, Y. Mantra, B. Schrammel
‘Romani as a case study of language codification and revitalization’ (pdf)
‘Standardisation linguistique: le cas de l’amazighe (berbère) en Afrique du Nord’ (pdf)
Esteban Emilio Mosonyi / Jorge Pocaterra
‘Experiencias recientes en los pueblos indígenas de Venezuela’ (pdf)
F. Xavier Fargas
‘Estandardització i manlleus: la diversitat entra dins del corpus’ (pdf)
‘The DOBES Program and its contribution to standardization and revitalization’ (pdf)
3. Evaluation on the current sociolinguistic research. New trends and paradigms
New paradigms of sociolinguistic research: ecolinguistic, complex and holistic theories. Planning multilingualism and cost-effectiveness analysis in language policies. Contrast between official language policies and the newest theoretical approaches.
Workshop coordinator: Lachman Khubchandani. Workshop conclusions (pdf)
‘The hidden agendas of language policy; effects on language rights’ (pdf)
T. Turell, R. Casesnoves, D. Sankoff
‘La base démolinguistique pour évaluer l’aménagement linguistique dans un contexte bilingue’ (pdf)
S. Ehrhart, C. Hélot
‘Building bridges or taking the ferry: pidgins, creoles and language acquisition in a multilingual setting’ (pdf)
‘Ecologie des langues: le fait scientifique et l’idéologie’ (pdf)
‘What do qualitative and quantitative surveys tell us about language policy?’ (pdf)
‘The role of language in the mobilization of ethnic and immigrant minorities’ (pdf)
4. Language law and language rights
Overview of the development of language legislation in different parts of the world and its repercussions on emerging regional blocs such as the European Union, NAFTA, Mercosur and others. Analysis of significant documents: European Charter of Regional or Minority Languages, the Universal Declaration of Linguistic Rights, etc.
Workshop coordinator: Miquel Strubell. Workshop conclusions (pdf)
‘La Ley de derechos lingüísticos en México’ (pdf)
Rosa Júlia Plá Coelho
‘A juridical approach to linguistic diversity in Europe: Considerations regarding adopting a catalog of basic language rights for national, international and European Union laws’ (pdf)
‘Language rights and linguistic citizenship’ (pdf)
Niamh Nic Shuibhne
‘The EU and its language scheme: Before and after the enlargement’ (pdf)
‘La Declaració Universal de Drets Lingüístics’ (pdf)
‘Legislació i drets lingüístics de la comunitat sorda’ (pdf)
‘Self-governance vs. lingusitic peace among the Canadian Inuit’ (pdf), ‘Self-governance vs. lingusitic peace among the Canadian Inuit’ (powerpoint)
5. Agents in favour of language diversity (NGO, IGO, civil society organizations)
Non Governmental Organizations and the struggle to conserve and promote language diversity. The effective participation of institutions from different parts of the world in the design, implementation and follow-up of programmes in the defence of endangered languages.
Workshop coordinator: Denis Cunningham. Workshop conclusions (pdf)
‘The public perception of language diversity’ (pdf)
K. Lindh, L. M. Gashi
‘Multilingual online training for cultural understanding: Starting points and challenges’ (pdf)
‘Cohésion sociale, politique linguistique et Linguapax’ (pdf)
‘The defence of language diversity’ (pdf)
D. Solà, J. Vinyet
‘Voluntaris per la llengua’ (pdf)
A. Noguerol, R. Ramírez, D. Masats
‘L’enfocament plural de l’ensenyament de llengua (ües) a l’escola. El projecte Jaling: materials i propostes’ (pdf)
‘A system of web-based projects sustaining language diversity’ (pdf)
Linguapax Awards 2004
The jury of the Linguapax prizes, formed by the members of the Advisory Committee of the Linguapax Institute have decided to award this year Joshua Fishman and Fernand de Varennes. The ceremony took place on May 23rd during the closing session of the congress.