Sharing a World of Difference: The Earth’s Linguistic, Cultural and Biological Diversity

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sharingUNESCO, Terralingua and WWF-World Wide Fund for Nature have produced an educational booklet focusing on the concept of biocultural diversity. Written by Terralingua researchers Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, Luisa Maffi, and David Harmon, and coordinated by UNESCO’s Education Sector, the booklet describes the world’s biodiversity and its linguistic and cultural diversity, as well as the threats these face.

“Globalization has made us increasingly aware of both the unity and the diversity of our planet. The growth of the information society has permitted global communication in ways that would have been unthinkable a mere decade ago, but it also presents dangers of cultural and linguistic homogenisation. The expansion of the global economy has fostered migration from small rural communities to large urban centres, as well as from country to country, further blurring the distinct identities of local communities. The interlinkages between linguistic, cultural and biological diversity, framed in this booklet as biocultural diversity, emphasize the need to be aware of the complex relationships which underpin the sustainable development of our contemporary world for future generations. It is here that education has a crucial role to play.”

 

 

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