International Mother Language Day 

Category: Culture

About International Mother Language Day 

How long until International Mother Language Day ?
International Mother Language Day  .
Dates of International Mother Language Day 
2023 United Nations Tuesday, February 21stInternational Mother Language Day 
2022 United Nations Monday, February 21stInternational Mother Language Day 
2021 United Nations Sunday, February 21stInternational Mother Language Day 
2020 United Nations Friday, February 21stInternational Mother Language Day 
2019 United Nations Thursday, February 21stInternational Mother Language Day 
Summary
Find out the dates, history and traditions of International Mother Language Day 

International Mother Language Day was proclaimed by the General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in November 1999. The UN General Assembly welcomed the proclamation of the day in its resolution of 2002.

History of International Mother Language Day 

On this day in 1952 students of Dhaka University and some social activists staged a protest to maintain the existence of their mother tongue. The protest soon turned into a massacre. 16 people were killed in this incident. 

Although it has been a United Nations initiative since 2002, the original idea to mark the day came from Bangladeshi migrants living in Canada who successfully petitioned the then UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, to take action to save languages from extinction.

  • Did you know? Eight out of ten of all the languages humans have ever spoken are now extinct..

The efforts of the Bangladeshi people to protect their language is honoured by UNESCO which established February 21st as International Mother Language Day in 2000. The intention of the day is to promote awareness of linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.

  • Did you know? In the Aymara language spoken in the mountains of Western Bolivia, the past is described as in front of the speaker and the future behind.

According to the United Nations, approximately 6,000 languages spoken across the world are at risk of extinction with a language disappearing every fortnight. As well as promoting intercultural dialogue and respect, languages are proven to also play important roles in the sustainable development of communities and the preservation of cultural heritage.

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