4. The Guaporé-Mamoré region as a linguistic area

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The Guaporé-Mamoré region is one of the world’s linguistically most diverse regions, with over 50 languages representing eight different stocks and 11 genetic isolates. In spite of the fact that these languages diverge enormously at the lexical level, they do seem to share a considerable number of structural features. Most of these languages are seriously endangered, but fortunately recent research initiatives have contributed to their documentation and led to new insights and data. This paper reviews the present research situation with regard to these languages and examines possible areal linguistic relationships in the Guaporé-Mamoré region.


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