The Linguists

You are probably aware that the name busuu derives from a little known Cameroonian language of the same name which is only spoken by 8 people based on an ethnological study conducted in the 1980´s. This name was chosen in the hope that one day busuu.com would not only be a platform for teaching and learning all the well-known languages of our world, but also for all those less well-known languages which deserve to be preserved – languages such as Busuu. The preservation of minority languages was also the theme of one of the huge successes at The Sundance Film festival in January of this year in the form of the film documentary “The Linguists“.

The documentary follows David Harrison and Gregory Anderson, university professors of linguistics, around the world to try and document languages on the verge of extinction. It is estimated that of approximately 7,000 languages in the world, half will have disappeared by the end of this century. On average, one language disappears every two weeks. This race against time takes David and Greg deep into the heart of the cultures of the communities at stake. They travel to Siberia to record the Chulym language, which hasn’t been heard by outsiders for more than thirty years. The linguists encounter, tribal children in India who attend boarding schools, where they learn Hindi and English and a trade, but are not allowed speak their native tongue. In Bolivia, the Kallawaya language has survived for centuries with fewer than one hundred speakers. The professors try to unlock its secret. We here at busuu.com hope that one day, in some way; we too can contribute to the preservation and the diversity of languages throughout the world.

Click here to see a trailer of the Linguists: www.thelinguists.com

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