• A
  • A
  • A
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
Regular version of the site

Book chapter

Languages and sociolinguistics of the Caucasus

P. 27-66.
Dobrushina N., Daniel M., Koryakov Y.

This chapter provides a sociolinguistic account of the languages of the Caucasus, includ­ing figures for speakers and their geographical distribution, language vitality, the official status of the languages, orthography, and writing practices. The chapter discusses lan­guage repertoires typical of different areas in the Caucasus, and their change over the 20th century. As a showcase, it provides an overview of traditional multilingualism in Daghestan, the most linguistically dense are in the Caucasus. It discusses various pat­terns of interethnic communication, including lingua franca and asymmetrical bilingual­ism. We show that bilingualism was gendered, and how Russian was spreading in the area as a new lingua franca. The chapter surveys the outcomes of language contact, covering both lexical borrowing (including main references to etymological research) and provid­ing examples of structural convergence, with a special focus on the area of the highest language density in the Caucasus, Dagestan. Data in the chapter are based both on offi­cial sources (censuses), on information provided by experts and on the authors’ own work in the field.

In book

Languages and sociolinguistics of the Caucasus
Edited by: M. Polinsky. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020.