For more information about the Global Language Initiative, please click here.

Isabelle Zaugg’s class Global Language Justice and the Digital Sphere was picked by Columbia Spectator as one of the top courses to take in 2019. Quoted from the article, “Global Language Justice and the Digital Sphere is the epitome of an excellent interdisciplinary course. In an increasingly digitized world, it makes sense that technology changes the way we communicate. Yet we often forget to think about how these technological advancements have the potential to reinforce toxic narratives of language and cultural dominance. In this class, you not only get to learn about the mechanics of language and script programming, but also why it’s important to make developments equitably around the world. I love how this class considered progress and accountability in an emerging and interesting field.”

Isabelle Zaugg is a Postdoctoral Fellow in Global Language Justice. Her research interests revolve around language & culture, media, and digital technologies in the global public sphere. Her dissertation entitled “Digitizing Ethiopic: Coding for Linguistic Continuity in the Face of Digital Extinction” investigates the relationship between digitally-disadvantaged languages and patterns of mass extinction of language diversity. Her dissertation approaches global concerns through a case study focused on the Ethiopian and Eritrean languages that utilize the Ethiopic script. It addresses the extent to which the script and its languages are supported in the digital sphere, including tracing the history of its inclusion in Unicode. It concludes with policy, governance, and advocacy recommendations to better support digitally-disadvantaged languages, in turn supporting their long-term survival.

For more information about the Global Language Initiative, please click here.