Letters of Men– Marma, an Endangered Alphabet

Marma alphabetic characters

Carving is the opposite of twitter and Instagram—it is a slow, thoughtful, and ancient process. This is the process that Tim Brookes uses to fashion the characters that make up endangered languages. His painstaking memorialization of these alphabets reminds us that language is much more than words. It is wisdom, culture, and identity. The loss of any language is horrifying. And such loss looms for thousands of languages and their alphabets

Beautiful carving of endangered alphabets
Beautiful carving of endangered alphabets

—UNESCO estimates that 2,500 languages worldwide are endangered.

Tim Brookes carved the Marma alphabet–and through Tim’s online postings, Our Golden Hour staff discovered his work and reached out to Tim Brookes. This has led to a partnership with The Endangered Alphabets Project, founded by Tim. This partnership is helping more than 1,000 children in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and countries surrounding this region. This area is home to twelve indigenous peoples whose languages and cultures are under threat of extinction.

The partnership between The Endangered Alphabets Project and Our Golden Hour has led to a model that shows promise in sustaining languages and cultures around the world.

Read more at A Man of Letters, Southwest, The Magazine.



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