Technologies in a Multilingual World

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Abstract:

By way of introduction, the many relations are considered between technologies and languages in a multilingual world. The contemporary biotechnosphere is also a sphere where natural and technical languages intermingle. In particular, three questions will be considered, all three pertaining to the relation between the technological and the multilingual condition of modern life: To what extent does technology foster and create the multilingual condition? What do the competencies acquired for navigating under the multilingual condition tell us more generally about linguistic competence as a technical skill? How can technologies help us navigate and orient ourselves in a multilingual world? If languages are themselves fixtures of the world that afford orientation in our socio-technical environment and co-ordination among people, we will no longer absolutize our native language as a standard for proper understanding. We multilingually learn to technically orient ourselves and control our social and material world.