New Written Languages

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

New Written Languages


the term applied to previously unwritten languages that have acquired a written form and whose written tradition is comparatively short. The term applies above all to languages of the USSR, where about 50 previously unwritten languages have acquired a written form.

The term “new written languages” designates languages with a nationally accepted written form that are used as the language of instruction in national schools and as the language of periodical publications, radio and television broadcasts, and the national theater. In these languages, works of literature, popular science, and social and political literature have become generally accessible.

New written languages in the USSR include Abaza, Avar, Adygei, Ingush, Altai, Koriak, Khanty, Khakass, and Chukchi. Some of these new written languages have become the languages of instruction in secondary and higher educational institutions (for example, literary Kirghiz). All of the new written languages of the peoples of the USSR have alphabets based on the Russian alphabet. A significant number of new written languages have also appeared in Africa (Yoruba, Twi, Bambara, Somali), America, and Oceania.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
It is also, perhaps, one of the only new written languages that can be immediately understood by nearly half a billion people.