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Earthdate 2004-05-05

Timor and East Timor – A history

Languages of Timor.  "All the languages of Timor belong to one of two major language groupings: the Austronesian language family or the Trans-New Guinea phylum of languages."

Joel at the superb Asia-Pacific oriented Far Outliers blog has posted several articles recently on Timor (an island a bit smaller than British Columbia's Vancouver Island, a fifth larger than Sicily, and half again the size of the state of Israel, just for comparison purposes), together with the new nation of East Timor (itself incorporating three-quarters the area of Israel, along with one-sixth its population) which occupies the island's eastern half — see, for instance, Joel's piece hereThis article, however, is particularly intriguing, linking to a book by the Australian National University called Out of the Ashes: Deconstruction and Reconstruction of East Timor, which it notes is “a collection of essays that examine the historical background to developments in East Timor and provide political analysis on the initial reconstruction stage in the country's transition to independence.”

Joel's Far Outliers' piece quotes extensively from Out of the Ashes' fascinating chapter on the historical background of Timor, within which one can find the above map illustrating the languages of Timor.  (Don't miss much other captivating stuff on that same Far Outliers' archive page.)



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