Visiting Lameen’s blog, I found a post mentioning that “Sorosoro have just put up a webpage by me, giving a general picture of the language of Tabelbala: Korandje.” Naturally, I followed the link, and found an interesting brief description of the Northern Songhay language he’s been working on. But what was Sorosoro? I went to their main page, which was intriguing; it has a fancy and colorful layout with links to blogs, videos, and news stories, and the subtitle “So the languages of the world may live on!” Their About page says:
Nowadays, the Araki language is only spoken by eight speakers in Vanuatu, a small state in the Pacific where we can find the biggest linguistic density in the world, about a hundred languages for 200 000 inhabitants.
In Araki, Sorosoro means “breath, speech, language”, and we have chosen this very symbolic word as the name for our safeguard program of threatened languages.
For the Araki language as for many others, time is running out. The process of extinction has accelerated considerably in recent decades and many languages with no more than a few speakers will disappear very quickly.
Of course, to safeguard the 6 000 languages that are spoken today all around the world is almost impossible : we already know that only a part of our linguistic inheritance will be saved. Yet, we want to participate and to contribute, with the help of other actors from this sector, towards the preservation of as many languages as possible ; because inaction will amount to the same thing as resigning to the cultural impoverishment of humanity.
That is why, with the support of our Scientific Council, we have set up a three- faceted program….
It all sounds admirable, but one is left wanting to know more about how it all came about, who’s behind it, how long it’s been in existence, and all the stuff an About page usually tells one. But if Lameen is involved with it, I presume it’s worthwhile, and I intend to investigate what it has on offer.