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Language facts: Introduction

The complete edition of Språkfakta 2015 (Language facts 2015) is a story about languages in Norway and the world, presented via more than 850 tables and other statistical documentation. This digital edition contains extracts from Språkfakta 2015.

The complete edition of Språkfakta 2015 (Language facts 2015) is a story about languages in Norway and the world, presented via more than 850 tables and other statistical documentation. This is the fourth collection of statistical information about languages published over the last 20 years and it replaces the previous editions. The aim has been to collect all relevant information about the use and scope of languages in Norway seen against an international backdrop, with an emphasis on the two Norwegian languages.

Språkfakta 2015 contains 867 tables, 34 figures/diagrams and maps, a language poster for Norway, 38 comments under the vignettes topics and perspectives, three accounts that attempt to summarise the findings of this process of documentation, and a concluding essay that discusses how to document the scope and use of language(s). The book, including all the comments and analyses of the material, totals 508 pages. A printout of the tables would comprise about 1350 pages in A4 format. It would not make sense to publish all this information on paper. Everything is therefore to be found at aasentunet.no.

The process of registering the scope and use of Norwegian Nynorsk began way back in 1905, and the entire development is now comprehensively documented with few gaps/omissions right from the time of Ivar Aasen. He was one of the first language researchers to make use of statistical documentation of language users in his work.

In recent decades, the perspective has been extended to include mapping of the scope and use of the other Norwegian written language, Norwegian Bokmål. The same applies to dialects in those areas where this is most relevant. In 2010, the process of documentation began to include the entire world, with particular emphasis on Scandinavia and Europe. This work has been considerably expanded in this new edition, which contains a number of original contributions on international topics.

This digital edition contains extracts from Språkfakta 2015 published partly in interactive form, partly translated into English. The digital version is the work of Allkunne – Norwegian Encyclopedia.

I commenced this extensive documentation work in 1997. After editions in 1998, 2005, 2010 and 2015, the fifth and final edition is planned to appear in 2020.

The  patterns of language use change so slowly that most of what was written in 2015 is still valid. 

 

Volda, November 2018

English translation Howard Medland 

Go to the homepage for Language facts


About the article

Extracts from Ottar Grepstad: Språkfakta 2015. Ørsta 2015. Digital and interactive version by Allkunne 2019. 

The complete edition of Språkfakta 2015 (in Norwegian) with tables is available at aasentunet.no

Sources to Ottar Grepstad: Språkfakta 2015. Ørsta 2015.

Først publisert: 06.07.2019
Sist oppdatert: 24.12.2019