Languages of New Guinea

Aikhenvald, Alexandra, and Stebbins, Tonya N. (2007) Languages of New Guinea. In: Miyaoka, Osahito, Sakiyama, Osamu, and Krauss, Michael E., (eds.) Vanishing Languages of the Pacific Rim. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK, pp. 239-266.

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Abstract

The New Guinea region (as defined below) is one of the most linguistically diverse and complex areas in the world, with over 1,000 languages spoken in an area of about 900,000 square km. About three to four hundred languages spoken there belong to the Austronesian family. Other, non-Austronesian,languages are often referred to as “Papuan” (see Foley 1986: 1–3, 8; 1997a; Dixon 1991: 245). The term “Papuan” is a rough denomination subsuming over sixty language families, which are not demonstrably related, and a fair number of isolates in the area. This term is used for convenience (similarly, perhaps, to terms like “Paleo-Siberian” (§ 20.1, this volume) or “Amazonian” (§ 10.1, this volume)).

Item ID: 9068
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
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ISBN: 978-019-926662-3
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2010 04:12
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2004 Linguistics > 200407 Lexicography @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950201 Communication Across Languages and Culture @ 100%
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