Book chapters will be unavailable on Saturday 24th August between 8am-12pm BST. This is for essential maintenance which will provide improved performance going forwards. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused.
To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
This chapter addresses structural aspects of language endangerment from two perspectives: the contributions that the study of endangered languages make to typology and linguistic theory, and the structural consequences of language endangerment, including the kinds of changes that can take place in the phonology, morphology and syntax of endangered languages. Typology is closely associated with the study of linguistic universals, which can be understood as the common characteristics of the world's languages, usually with the goal of providing insight into the fundamental nature of human language. Though there are various ways in which languages can become extinct, the most typical is through language shift when a language gradually comes to have fewer and fewer speakers who use it in ever fewer domains until finally no one is able to speak it in any context. This process is sometimes called language obsolescence.