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Could the language of the Navajo die out?

On the German Wikipedia site, I read that Navajo could die out because there are more children who only speak English. In 1980, only 11,8% of the children only spoke English. In 2000, it was 48,7%. So, could the language of the Navajo die out? (Please correct me if I did some mistakes in this text.)

April 15, 2019



Well, just before that the article states that the number of Navajo speakers is increasing, so the percentage of children who speak only English has probably dropped since 2000. Generally, while Navajo is considered endangered, it's among the "healthier" Native American languages, with a relatively large amount of native speakers and several programs aimed at increasing its usage. There are dozens if not hundreds of Native American languages that will likely die out before Navajo does.


Sometimes I kinda wish everyone would suddenly speak all the pre-european contact languages, the fact the Americas are losing their language diversity saddens me, at this rate only a few European languages will be spoken here, maybe a very few of the very healthy native languages like quechua and Nahuatl, and the possible loss of Aleut languages saddens me too, hopefully greenlandic stays prominent in Greenland


I'm a linguist working in language revitalization, so I totally agree with you. So much work needs to be done to keep these languages going. If you're passionate about it, you should consider studying linguistics ;)


sorry if that turned really ranty, but this stuff legitimately saddens me, maybe it's for the better that everyone speaks an international language, but still, very sad


I certainly hope not. All languages are valuable, especially rare ones. I don’t think it will die out completely, because there is a course on Duolingo, so at least there should always be some basics. A lot of other websites have Navajo dictionaries.

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