• Summary
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There are between 4,000 and 6,000 languages remaining in the world and the characteristics of these languages vary widely. How could an infant born today master any language in the world, regardless of the language's characteristics?

Life with More than One Language
Life with more than one language

In some parts of the world, such as the United States, there is the misperception that knowing only one language, or monolingualism, is the norm. In fact, it is common to know more than one language. Approximately half of the world's population use more than one language in their daily life. Even in the United States, 55% of those surveyed for the 2000 census reported being proficient in English and using a language other than English at home (U.S. Census Bureau, 2000). In the United States, it is expected that the number of bilinguals will continue to rise in the coming decades.

▴ Photo 7.1 A bilingual infant lies between Mom and Dad. ...
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