Since 2014, the Endangered Language Alliance (ELA) has been working with speakers and communities to map the lesser-known, minority, endangered, and Indigenous languages of the New York area. The first product of this effort — a print map showing 637 language varieties at 1,000 significant sites across the metropolitan area — shows a city of deep and intricate linguistic diversity. The map raises difficult questions of representation, both technological and conceptual, about how to map linguistic geography.
Together with partners at UBC, ELA is now working to develop a digital map and a set of related tools for urban language mapping through a Wall Solutions grant from the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies.
Ross Perlin is a linguist, writer, and translator focused on supporting linguistic diversity. He Co-Directs the Endangered Language Alliance and holds a PhD in Linguistics from the University of Bern. He currently teaches at Columbia.
View event poster here.