This series offers general accounts of the major language families of the world. Volumes are organized on either a genetic or a geographical basis, whichever yields the most convenient and intelligible grouping in each case. Each volume compares and contrasts the typological features of the languages it deals with. It also treats the relevant genetic relationships, historic development, and sociolinguistic issues arising from their role and use in the world today. The main readership is the student of linguistics or the general linguist, but some volumes have a wider appeal, especially where the future of the languages and their speakers raises important social and political issues.