The Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project  The Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project

Language Documentation and Description Volume 4



Volume 4 is a collection of papers dealing with three topics in language documentation:

• Current issues in language documentation
• Meaning and translation in language documentation
• Literacy and language documentation

A CD-ROM The Disappearing Sounds of the World’s Languages, based on a lecture given by the late Professor Peter Ladefoged, is provided free with the volume.

Ladefoged CDMost of the papers arose from workshops held at SOAS in December 2005 and February 2006. They represent important contributions to the theory and practice of the field of language documentation by leading scholars and younger researchers.

The volume will be of interest to anyone concerned with documenting and describing languages.

For cost and ordering information, see the ordering section.



  • Editor's Introduction Peter K. Austin
  • Current trends in language documentation Peter K. Austin and Lenore A. Grenoble
  • Documentary linguistics and ethical issues Nick Thieberger and Simon Musgrave
  • The ecology of documentary and descriptive linguistics Jeff Good
  • Searching for meaning in the library of Babel: field semantics and problems of digital archiving Nick Evans and Hans-Jürgen Sasse
  • Reason, understanding and the limits of translation William Foley
  • On thick translation in linguistic documentation Anthony C. Woodbury
  • What elicitation misses: dominant languages, dominant semantics David Bradley
  • The importance and challenges of documenting pragmatics Lenore A. Grenoble
  • The role of metadata for translation and pragmatics in language documentation Henrik Bergqvist
  • Literacy work in Papua New Guinea: the accidental and the planned Mary Raymond
  • Literacy use and acquisition in multilingual Eritrea Yonas M. Asfaha, Jeanne Kurvers and Sjaak Kroon
  • Multiliteracy, past and present, in the Karaim communities David Nathan and Éva Á. Csató


Cost: £10.

To order please go to the SOAS online store.