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Why Not Esperanto?

David Graddol, a British linguist, wrote the book The Future of English? (1997), where he is daring enough to predict the Top 10 languages that will be spoken by young people (Ages 15-24) in the year 2050:

  1. 166,000,000 youth
  2. 73,700,000 youth
  3. 72,200,000 youth
  4. 65,000,000 youth
  5. 62,800,000 youth
  6. 32,500,000 youth
  7. 31,500,000 youth
  8. 22,500,000 youth
  9. 18,200,000 youth
  10. 10,500,000 youth
Ooops...I forgot to include the languages, which are (in alphabetical order): Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, English, Hindu/Urdu, Japanese, Malay, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.

Task: Try to pair the language with its rank order. Also, how (including statistical basis) do you think Graddol was able to make these predictions?

If you want to search out answers, you can find Graddol's book on-line ...it makes other interesting observations as well.