Language Ecology, Language Politics: Towards a Geolinguistic Imagination
What will the world look like linguistically a hundred years from now? The use and distribution of languages across the planet is changing so quickly that even experts cannot answer this question. This lecture will discuss some of the processes of change that are under way, including language death, language migration, and the formation of lingua francas and interlanguages. It will ask what the idea of rights can and cannot do in this context and consider what an ecological approach to language might involve.
Mary Louis Pratt is Silver Professor in the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at New York University, where she teaches Latin American literature and cultural theory. She holds degrees in comparative literature and linguistics from the University of Toronto, the University of Illinois, and Stanford University. She has published extensively on the subjects of Latin American women's writing; travel literature and imperialism; language and militarization; and modernity and neoliberalism. She has been affiliated with the Hemispheric Institute since 2002.