The Voice of Man
Paperback, 130 Pages
Prints in 3-5 business days
In the middle of the Irish Sea, a small island sits between Wales and Ireland. Most non-Europeans have never noticed this speck of land on a map. Their eyes tend to skip over it: another one of the many small islands to which few pay any mind. This island is called the Isle of Man, home of the Manx language, a tongue spoken natively by only fifty four people. The Voice of Man examines the history of this language: the rich history of its island and its people, its extinction, its subsequent revival and, most importantly, the lessons this story can teach us about the future of our linguistic diversity. Half narrative, half investigation, The Voice of Man unearths the causes behind Manx’s death and rebirth and why these forces will play a major role in the decades to come.
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Jul 12, 2009"The Voice of Man" I've actually been to the Isle of Man (it's an offshore banking center for continental Europe), and I didn't know anybody there still spoke Manx! Now I know why. According to Merrill, English became the language of business, prosperity, and modern life (I was there on business myself), and the old tongue and the old ways came to be looked down upon. Islanders stopped speaking their native language, stopped teaching it to their children, and even pretended they didn't know it themselves. But a handful of locals have recently devoted themselves to preserving Manx, and Nick Merrill, an American high school student (the Islanders keep thinking he's Canadian) arrives for the summer and joins their effort to save Manx from extinction. The Voice of Man is Merrill's informative, humorous, and touching account of his summer on a tiny island with a parliament that was founded by the Vikings. When he returns to Los Angeles for his senior year of high school, he... More > brings the Manx language home with him - perhaps the first person ever to carry it beyond the rocky shores of the Isle of Man where it nearly fell into extinction.< Less
Jun 21, 2009"The Voice of Man" A Los Angeles high school student wins a fellowship to document a nearly extinct language. He travels halfway around the world to a tiny island, immerses himself in an ancient culture with an ancient tongue, and comes away with insights that apply as much to himself and all of us as to the Manx people. The Voice of Man is both a work of scholarship and the deeply affecting narrative of an American teenager's journey to the heart of a culture as old as the abandoned castles and towers he explores on the island, and as lively and surprising as his interviews with the fifty-four people left on earth who speak the Manx language. An arresting and deeply rewarding book.
May 4, 2009"The Voice of Man" I am 37 years old and have travelled a great deal. Although Nick Merrill's motivation was the study and salvation of a nearly extinct language, his unique perceptions of culture, people, and history were inspiring. In my future travels, I'll never look at diffent cultures and peoples without seeing their relationship to one another, and to the past and future. Well written, nicely illustrated, even a beautiful cover.
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- Nick Merrill (Standard Copyright License)
- First Edition
- Nick Merrill
- April 29, 2009
- Perfect-bound Paperback
- Interior Ink
- Black & white
- 0.54 lbs.
- Dimensions (inches)
- 6 wide x 9 tall
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