The History of Languages: An Introduction
by Tore Janson 
Oxford University Press, 2011 
ISBN: 0199604290

A clearly written introduction and an easy to read book. The author writes in a friendly relaxed manner and provides a satisfying overview of the stated subject, moving across time and space. Of course it is an introductory text; it is up to the reader to pursue further study.

What I found very interesting is the relationship between languages, state power and the rise of nationalism. It becomes obvious that the development of languages, especially in their written form, has been far from random, but rather a sytematic pursuit of states throughout history.

Read it!

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