Date: Wed, 13 Sep 1995 10:02:51 CST From: salikoko mufwene Subject: Re: FOR English Only >> No other nation that I am aware of is facing the language challenge >> that we are up against. Perhaps not as hysterically? The development of the Sociology of Language is in part attributable to misguided promises to help Third World countries solve their economic and political development problems by eliminating societal multilingualism. The literature dealt with the epiphenomenon and ignored almost everything that mattered for the "development" of those countries. Of course, there was also the hypermetropic illusion that those problems were characteristic of the Third World in the wake on "political independence." >>In spite of our technological advances, such >> as this e-mail, communication is breaking down due to language >> diversification. With the rate of growth of non-English communities, >> it is increasingly difficult to maintain viable communication. >I assume you're talking about the number of different languages spoken >in the US. Right? Has anybody established a maximum number of different >languages appropriate for maintaining viable communication? Obviously it >has to be four or more since Switzerland seems to do ok. Could you both start by explaining what you mean by "viable communication?" at what level of interaction? Sali. *********************************************************************** Salikoko S. Mufwene University of Chicago Dept. of Linguistics 1010 East 59th Street Chicago, IL 60637 s-mufwene[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] 312-702-8531; fax: 312-702-9861