Ever wondered what it would be like to learn a language such as Klingon or Dothraki? For me, the want never exceeded the amount of hours it would take sifting through books and hoping without hope to get involved with enough people to engage my new languages all the more. On top of all that, who has the time?
What if I told you, there is time?
New popularity in conlang (constructed/invented languages) has given rise to new developments in language learning software. From Apple to the company Living Language, the possibilities are endless. In an interview with the guardian, Christophe Grandsire-Koeveots, president of the Language Creation Society had this to say: “More and more people are willing to publicly talk about this hobby…Don’t forget that up until a few years ago, language creation was viewed with suspicion or at best was ridiculed as a useless hobby, and many older [language inventors], (myself included), didn’t dare ‘come out’ as language creators due to fear of being ridiculed.”
One major contribution to the growing interest in conlang could be from the series, “Game of Thrones.” Understanding this, Living Language has now released a comprehensive course on Dothraki. Taking it a step further, HBO has hired David J Peterson, the creator of the Dothraki language, full time tocreate conlang. Peterson is believed to be the first person in the world to create languages full time.
Creating languages can be considered a tool or anart, just like any other language. But for some, the fad sparks frustration. According to an estimation by some linguists, over 80% of the world’s languages could disappear over the next century.
Whether around 5,000 languages will die out in a hundred years or not, conlang doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. Unlike other hobbies, conlangs come together to speak to one another, understanding the stories and the people all the better.
Perhaps when all languages are gone, conlangs will surface as a new era of speech. But of course, only time will tell.