AP Human Geography: Language

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45 Terms
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A distinctive mode of pronunciation of a language, especially one associated with a particular nation, locality, or social class.
Developing language
A language spoken in daily use with a literary tradition that is not widely distributed.
A regional variation of a language distinguished by vocabulary, spelling, and pronunciation, particular to a specific region or social group.
Extinct Language
A language that no longer has any speakers, or that is no longer in current use.
Institutional language
A language used in education, work, mass media, and government.
A geographic boundary line delimiting the area in which a given linguistic feature occurs.
Isolated Language
A natural language with no demonstrable genealogical (or "genetic") relationship with other languages or language families; that is, one that has not been demonstrated to descend from an ancestor common with any other language. i.e A language family with only one language. [Japanic, Mongolic, Hmongic, Gregorian (Basque)]
Language Branch
A Subsection of a Language Family. Differences are not as extensive or old as with language families.
The method of human communication, either spoken or written, consisting of the use of words in a structured and conventional way.
Language Group
A collection of languages within a branch that share a common origin in the relatively recent past and display relatively few differences in grammar and vocabulary.
Language Family
A collection of languages related to each other through a common ancestor long before recorded history. The trunk of the language tree, from which language branches come from.
Language Tree
A representation of the relationships of languages to each other, showing language families, branches, and groups.
a language specialist; someone who studies multiple languages
Indo-European Language Family
Largest language family that includes English and most other languages in the Western Hemisphere. Also used in South and Southwest Asia. Includes the Germanic, Baltic, Slavic, Romance, "Indic", Balto-Slavic, Armenian, Albanian, Indo-Iranian, Anatolian (dead)
Sino-Tibetan Language Family
2nd largest language family. Includes Chinese dialects (Madarin and Cantonese) Thai, and Burmese
Lingua Franca
A Language mutually understood and commonly used in trade by people who have different native languages (currently English worldwide).
Monolingual State
A country in which only one language is spoken (i.e. Japan, Korea)
The ability to speak two languages.
Multilingual State
A country in which more than one language is in use (India, Nigeria, Belgium, Switzerland)
Official Language
The language adopted for use by the government for the conduct of business and publication of documents, a language that is given ☆special legal status☆
Pidgin Language
A Form of speech that adopts a simplified grammar and limited vocabulary of a lingua franca, used for communications among speakers of two different languages.
Standard Language
The specific form of a language used for official government business, education, and mass communications.
The name of a place, often reflecting that place's history and culture.
Using a language or dialect native to a region or country rather than a literary, cultured, or foreign language. It is usually the language of the common people.
A language that results from the mixing of a colonizer's language with the indigenous language of the people being dominated. Developed out of an earlier pidgin stage.
Romance Branch
A language branch of the Indo-European Language Family. This branch includes languages that evolved from Latin (the language of the Romans). Includes Spanish, French, Portuguese, Galicain, Canatolian, Italian, Romanian, Romansh
Germanic Branch
A language branch of the Indo-European Language Family. North group inncludes Scandinavian languages (Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Icelandic), which all came from Old Norse. West group is further divided into High and Low subgroups. Includes the standard German language, English, Dutch, Flemish (Dialect of Dutch), Afrikaaans, and Frisian.
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Indo-Iranian Branch
Branch of the Indo-European language family; includes more than 100 individual languages divided into an eastern group (Indic), which includes the languages of Hinid and Urdu and a western group (Iranian), which includes Farsi and Kurdish.
Balto-Slavic Branch
Branch of the Indo-European language family; can be broken down into four groups: East Slavic (Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian), Baltic (Latvian, Lithuanian), West Slavic (Polish, Czech, and Slovak), and South Slavic (Serbo-Croatian).
Celtic Branch
Branch of the Indo-European Language Family; divided into two language groups: Goidelic (Gaelic), which includes Irish Gaelic and Scottish Gaelic, and Brythonic, which includes Welsh, Breton, and Cornish.
Uralic Language Family
Language Family in Europe that includes the languages of Estonian, Finnish, and Hungarian.
Austronesian Language Family
Language Family spoken mostly in Indonesia. This family includes the languages of Javanese, Indonesian, Malay, and Malagasy.
Afro-Asiatic Language Family
Includes the languages of Arabic and Hebrew.
Niger-Congo Language Family
Includes Swahili, the lingua franca in Africa, and Zulu (the languages of the Bantu peoples)
Prehistoric Subgroup
A language that predates the current language family, before the written record. Ex: Proto-Indo-European
Altaic Language Family
A language family spoken across central Asia named after the Altai Mountains. Includes Turkish, the languages spoken in the Caucasus Region and across Central Asia, and is spoken in countries like Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Mongolia and Georgia.
Renfrew (Anatolian) Theory
Argues the Proto-Indo-European language diffused by way of agricultural practices from Anatolia (Turkey) in 6300 BC.
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Language Divergence
When a lack of spatial interaction (isolation) among speakers of a language breaks the language into dialects and then new languages.
Language Convergence
When peoples with different languages have consistent spatial interaction and their languages collapse into one (i.e. pidgin and creole).
Backward Reconstruction
When linguists track sound shifts and the hardening of consonants backward to reveal an "original" language.
vigorous language
a language that is spoken in daily use but that lacks a literary tradition (written evidence, etc)
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Language Revival
an attempt to halt or reverse the decline of a language or to revive an extinct one
Tai Kadai or Kra Dai family
Tai, Lao
Austro Asiatic family
Vieatnamese, Khamer, Mon (Burma)
dravidian family
Southern India and Shri Lanka