Demographic and Socioeconomic Characteristics of Persons with Language–Use Limitations, and Special Languages

  • Jacob S. Siegel


Some groups in the population have special problems in coding and decoding written and spoken languages and they have had to adopt alternative methods of communication or use irregular speech patterns. Such groups include sensory-impaired persons (i.e., hearing-impaired persons and visually impaired persons), persons having learning disabilities or other speech impediments, such as occur with brain injuries, and persons with neuropsychiatric conditions such as cognitive impairment or schizophrenia. Some groups use special languages for religious ceremonies and rituals that are different from their ordinary speech. Some engage in use of secret languages to conceal their conversation from others, such as the play speech of some children. Many adults address very young children who may be just learning to speak or their pets by a special variation of their ordinary speech. These secret and play languages are here collectively grouped under the heading of “ludlings.” In social networking by computer and related devices young people use a special language for their communication with one another. Finally, artificial languages have been constructed for a variety of reasons. They may have been devised to facilitate international communication between persons who normally speak different languages. Occasionally artificial languages have been created for literary or dramatic purposes, as in science fiction, to represent the speech of beings in outer space. Artificial languages have also been devised to make possible communication between people and machines, and between machines and other machines. Such languages are denoted machine languages.

List of References and Suggested Readings

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Sacred and Special Languages

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jacob S. Siegel
    • 1
  1. 1.North BethesdaUSA

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