Language and the United Nations:

A Bibliography and Resource List

Download a PDF version of this bibliography. 

 

This list contains items dealing directly with language and the United Nations, some key items on language in other international organizations, and background works likely to be of interest to those concerned with the United Nations’ role in the world, the Sustainable Development Goals, and related issues.

 

Arzoz, Xabier, ed. 2008. Respecting Linguistic Diversity in the European Union. Amsterdam: Benjamins.

Bastardas i Boada, Alberto. 2002. World language policy in the era of globalization: Diversity and intercommunication from the perspective of “complexity.”  Noves SL: Revista de Sociolingüística.  Summer.

Biersteker, Ann J. 2015. Links that speak only some languages. PNAS (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci.) 112/15: E1814.

Blommaert, Jan. 2010. The Sociolinguistics of Globalization. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Borjian, Maryam. 2014. Language-education policies and international institutions: The World Bank’s vs. UNESCO’s global framework. Language Problems and Language Planning 38/1:1-18.


Corrêa d’Almeida, A. and B. Otcu-Grillman (2013). The Portuguese language in the United Nations – framing policy design. International Journal of the Sociology of Language, 224: 1–23.


de Saint Robert, Marie-Josée Jastrab. 1988. Le rapport langue-culture dans les organisations internationales : pour une sociologie des organisations internationales.  Language Problems and Language Planning 12/3:199-212.


de Saint Robert, Marie-Josée. 2008. CAT tools in international organisations: Lessons learnt from the experience of the Languages Service of the United Nations Office at Geneva. In Elia Yuste Rodrigo, ed. Topics in Language Resources for Translation and LocalisationAmsterdam: Benjamins. 107–119.


de Saint Robert, Marie-Josée. 2000. La politique de la langue française. Que sais-je. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.


de Varennes, F. 2012. Language policy at the supranational level. In Bernard Spolsky, ed. The Cambridge Handbook of Language Policy. Cambridge & New York: Cambridge University Press. 149-173.


Duchêne, Alexandre. 2008. Ideology Across Nations: The Construction of Linguistic Minorities at the United Nations. New York: Mouton de Gruyter.


Ellis, Donald G. 1992. Written language and United Nations documents. In Kurt E. Müller, ed. Language as Barrier and Bridge. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 87-101.


Erling, Elizabeth J., and Philip Seargeant, ed. 2013. English and Development: Policy, Pedagogy and Globalization. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.


Fettes, Mark.  1996.  Inside the tower of words: The institutional functions of language at the United Nations.  In Sylvie Léger, ed. Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa. 115-134.


Fettes, Mark. 2003. The geostrategies of interlingualism. Jacques Maurais and Michael A. Morris, eds. Languages in a Globalising World. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 37-46.


Fettes, Mark. 2015. Language in the United Nations post-2015 development agenda: Challenges to language policy and planning. Language Problems and Language Planning. 39/3: 298-311.


Fiedler, Sabine. 2010. Approaches to fair linguistic communication. European Journal of Language Policy 2/1:1-22.


Friedrich, Patricia, ed. 2016, forthcoming. English for Diplomatic Purposes. Multilingual Matters.


Fukuda-Parr, Sakiko, ed. 2004. Human Development Report 2004: Cultural Liberty in Today’s World. New York: United Nations Development Program (UNDP).


Gaiba, Francesca. 1998. The Origins of Simultaneous Interpretation: The Nuremberg Trial. Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press.


Gazarian, Jean. 1992. Language problems in international organizations. In Kurt E. Müller, ed. Language as Barrier and Bridge. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 11-15.


Gazarian, Jean. 1996. Is linguistic evolution in the United Nations a consequence of recent political evolution? In Kurt E. Müller, ed.  Language Status in the Post-Cold-War Era.  Lanham, MD: University Press of America.  23-28.


Gazzola, Michele. 2006. Managing multilingualism in the European Union: Language policy evaluation for the European Parliament. Language Policy 5: 393-417


Gazzola, Michele. 2014. The Evaluation of Language Regimes: Theory and Application to Multilingual Patent Organisations. Amsterdam: Benjamins.


General Assembly of the United Nations. Rules of Procedure VIII Languages. http://www.un.org/en/ga/about/ropga/lang.shtml


Harry, Ralph L. 1997. Development of a language for international law. In Humphrey Tonkin, ed. Esperanto, Interlinguistics, and Planned Language. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 173-182.


Harry, Ralph L., & Mark Mandel.  1979.  Language Equality in International Cooperation.  Esperanto Documents 21A.  Rotterdam: Universal Esperanto Association.


Hillery, Paul. 2004. The United Nations and its culture of language. http://www.fb06.uni-mainz.de/fbpubl/archiv/pdf/hillery-paul.pdf / http://franceonu.org/la-france-a-l-onu/dossiers-thematiques/francophonie/  


Jastrab, Marie-Josée.  1984.  Organizational vs. individual bilingualism: The case of the United Nations Secretariat.  In Jane Edwards and Humphrey Tonkin, ed.  Language Behavior in International Organizations


Jastrab, Marie-Josée. 1985. Guidelines for terminology standardization at the United Nations. In Karen Johnson-Weiner and Humphrey Tonkin, ed. Language Planning at the International Level. Report of the Third Annual Conference of the Center for Research and Documentation on World Language Problems.  New York: Center for Research and Documentation on World Language Problems.


Jones, P., and D. Coleman. 2005. The United Nations and Education: Multilingualism, Development and Globalization. London: Routledge.


King, Lid, & Lorna Carson, ed. 2016. The Multilingual City: Vitality, Conflict and Change. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.

La France à l’ONU. Francophonie.


Lapenna, Ivo, Ulrich Lins k Tazio Carlevaro. 1974.  Esperanto en perspektivo:Faktoj kaj analizoj pri la Internacia Lingvo.  London & Rotterdam: Centro de Esploro kaj Dokumentado pri la Monda Lingvo-Problemo.


Lapenna, Ivo.  1969.  La situation juridique des "langues officielles" avant la fondation des Nations Unies.  La Monda Lingvo-Problemo. 1:5-18.


Lapenna, Ivo.  1969.  La situation juridique des langues sous le régime des Nations Unies.  La Monda Lingvo-Problemo, 1:87-106.


Lapenna, Ivo.  1970-71.  The Common Language Question Before International Organizations.  La Monda Lingvo-Problemo. 2:83-102, 3:11-30.


Larson, B. 2011. Metaphors for Environmental Sustainability: Redefining Our Relationship with Nature.  New Haven: Yale University Press.


Le Bouthillier, Yves. 1996. Refléxions sur les insuffisances des instruments internationaux relatifs à la langue.  In Sylvie Léger, ed. Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa. 561-577.


Léger, Sylvie, ed.  1996.  Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa.


McEntee-Atalianis L. J. 2006. Geostrategies of Interlingualism: Language Policy and Practice in the International Maritime Organisation, London, UK. Current Issues in Language Planning 7/2&3: 341-358.


McEntee-Atalianis, L. J.  2011 .The Role of Metaphor in Shaping the Identity and Agenda of the United Nations: The Imagining of an International Community and International Threat. Discourse and Communication, 5/4: 393-412.


McEntee-Atalianis, L. J. (In preparation) Language Policy and Planning in International Organisations: Multilingualism and the United Nations: Diplomatic Baggage or Passport to Success?  Ulrike Jessner & Claire Kramsch, eds. Multilingualism: The Challenges. Trends in Applied Linguistics. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.


McEntee-Atalianis, L. J. 2011. The role of metaphor in shaping the identity and agenda of the United Nations: The imagining of an international community and international threat. Discourse and Communication 5/4: 393-412.


McEntee-Atalianis, L.J. 2008. Diplomatic negotiation in an international organisation: An exploration of expert status and power. The International Journal of Diversity in Organisations, Communities and Nations 8/3: 265-271.


McEntee-Atalianis, L.J. 2016, in press. A network model of language policy and planning: The United Nations as a case study. Language Problems and Language Planning. 40/2.


McEntee-Atalianis, L.J. 2015. Language policy and planning in international organisations. Jessner-Schmid, U. and Kramsch, C.J.(eds.) The Multilingual Challenge: Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives. Trends In Applied Linguistics 16. Berlin, Germany: Mouton De Gruyter. 295-322.


Mowbray, Jacqueline. 2012. Linguistic Justice; International law and Language Policy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


Müller,Kurt E., ed. 1996. Language Status in the Post-Cold-War Era. Lanham, Maryland: University Press of America.


Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie. 2013. Mise en oeuvre du multilinguisme dans les organisations internationales: Mettre en pratique la diversité linguistique. Paris: Éditions Nathan.


Pearl, Stephen B.  1996.  Changes in the pattern of language use in the United Nations.  In Kurt E. Müller, ed.  Language Status in the Post-Cold-War Era.  Lanham, MD: University Press of America.  29-42.


Pearl, Stephen B. 1992. Modified Babel: The keepers of the tower – A guided tour to interpretation at the United Nations. In Kurt E. Müller, ed. Language as Barrier and Bridge. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 17-30.


Phillipson, Robert. 1996. The UN agenda for development: The role of languages. In Sylvie Léger, ed. Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa. 399-422.


Phillipson, Robert. 2003. English-only Europe? Challenging Language Policy.  London: Routledge.


Piron, Claude, and Humphrey Tonkin. 1979. Translation in International Organizations.  Esperanto Documents 20A.  Rotterdam: Universal Esperanto Association.


Piron, Claude.  1994.  Le Défi des langues. Du gâchis au bon sens. Paris: L’Harmattan


Piron, Claude. 1996. Une solution à étudier: l’Espéranto. In Sylvie Léger, ed. Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa. 631-657.


Piron, Claude. 2006. Choosing an official language. Ulrich Ammon and others, ed. Sociolinguistics/ Soziolinguistik 3. Berlin & New York: Walter de Gruyter. 249/2484-2493.


Rafalovitch, Alexandre, and Robert Dale. 2009. United Nations General Assembly resolutions: A six-language parallel corpus. Proceedings of the MT Summit XII. Ottawa, Canada. 292-299. http://www.uncorpora.org/Rafalovitch_Dale_MT_Summit_2009.pdf 


Ricento, Thomas, Yael Peled & Peter Ives, ed. 2015. Language Policy and Political Theory. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. (Originally published as a special issue of the journal Language Policy (13 [2014] 3).


Ricento, Thomas. 2014/2015. Thinking about language: What political theorists nned to know about language in the real world. 
Ricento, Peled & Ives, ed., Language Policy and Political Theory. Cham: Switzerland: Springer. 57-75. (Originally published as a special issue of the journal Language Policy (13 [2014] 3).

Romaine, Suzanne. 2013. Keeping the promise of the Millennium Development Goals: Why language matters. Applied Linguistics Review 4/1: 1-21.


Samb, Assane. 1992. Language problems with and among refugees. In Kurt E. Müller, ed. Language as Barrier and Bridge. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 73-77.


Schmidt, Ronald, Sr. 2014/2015. Democratic theory and the challenge of linguistic diversity. Ricento, Peled & Ives, ed., Language Policy and Political Theory. Cham: Switzerland: Springer. 101-117. (Originally published as a special issue of the journal Language Policy (13 [2014] 3).


Shaw, Christopher, & Brigitte Nerlich. 2015. Metaphor as a mechanism of global climate change governance: A study of international policies 1992-2012. Ecological Economics 109/1: 34-40.


Simon, Sherry. 2012. Cities in Translation: Intersections of Language and Memory. Abingdon & New York: Routledge.


Skutnabb-Kangas, Tove, & Robert Phillipson, ed.  1995.  Linguistic Human Rights: Overcoming Linguistic Discrimination.  Berlin & New York: Mouton de Gruyter.


Skutnabb-Kangas, Tove.  2000.  Linguistic Genocide in Education – or Worldwide Diversity and Human Rights?  Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.


Titov, Alexandre K. 1996. The role of Russian in the Post-Cold-War era. In Kurt E. Müller, ed.  Language Status in the Post-Cold-War Era.  Lanham, MD: University Press of America.  43-48.


Tkachenko, Sergei I. Implicit information in translating United Nations documents. In Kurt E. Müller, ed. Language as Barrier and Bridge. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 31-34.


Tonkin, Humphrey & Jane Edwards, ed. 1984. Language Behavior in International Organizations. Report of the Second Annual Conference of the Center for Research and Documentation on World Language Problems. New York: The Center.


Tonkin, Humphrey.  1996.  Language hierarchy at the United Nations.  In Sylvie Léger, ed. Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa. 3-28.


Tonkin, Humphrey.  2003.  The search for a global linguistic strategy.  Jacques Maurais & Michael A. Morris, ed., Languages in a Globalising World.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.  319-333.


Tonkin, Humphrey. 1996. Language equality at the United Nations: An achievable dream.  In Kurt E. Müller, ed.  Language Status in the Post-Cold-War Era.  Lanham, MD: University Press of America.  141-148.


Tonkin, Humphrey. 2007. Exclusion and inclusion in Europe: The search for a European language policy.  Pol Cuvelier, Theodorus du Plessis, Michael Meeuwis & Lut Teck, eds.  Multilingualism and Exclusion: Policy, Practice and Prospects.  Pretoria: Van Schaik.  207-223.


Tonkin, Humphrey. 2011. Language and the United Nations: A Preliminary Review. http://esperanto-un.org/images/languages-un-tonkin-draft-dec2011.pdf


Tonkin, Humphrey. 2015. The search for linguistic equality. Language Problems and Language Planning. 39/3: 221-226.


UN Department for General Assembly and Conference Management. http://www.un.org/Depts/DGACM/


UN Joint Inspection Unit.  2002. Implementation of Multilingualism in the United Nations System,  JIU/REP/2002/11, United Nations, Geneva.


UN Joint Inspection Unit. 2011. Multilingualism in the United Nations system organizations: Status of implementation, JIU/REP/2011/4, United Nations, Geneva.  https://www.unjiu.org/en/reports-notes/JIU%20Products/JIU_REP_2011_4_English.pdf


UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. https://www.un.org/development/desa/indigenouspeoples/


Van der Jeught, Stefaan. 2015. EU Language Law. Groningen, Netherlands: Europa Law Publishing.


Van Parijs, Philippe. 2011. Linguistic Justice for Europe and for the World. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


Weiser, Irit.  1996.  United Nations norms relating to language.  In Sylvie Léger, ed. Vers un agenda linguistique: regard futuriste sur les Nations Unies / Towards a Language Agenda: Futurist Outlook on the United Nations.  Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Linguistic Rights, University of Ottawa. 241-259.


Wright, Sue. 2009. The elephant in the room: Language issues in the European Union. European Journal of Language Policy 1/2:93-120.


Wyzner, Eugeniusz. 1992. Languages in international organizations: The case of the United Nations. In Kurt E. Müller, ed. Language as Barrier and Bridge. Lanham, MD: University Press of America. 1-10.

  

 

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