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Demografía de la lengua española


  • Francisco Moreno Fernández

    (Universidad de Alcalá)

  • Jaime Otero Roth

    (Real Instituto Elcano de Estudios Internacionales y Estratégicos)


Within the study of the social and economic roles of the world’s languages, the demographic aspect –ie, the number of speakers– is often glossed over or presented with a great deal of inaccuracy. This working paper proposes a methodology for counting the number of Spanish speakers that allows a more detailed picture of the Spanish language in the international context. The methodology makes a distinction between a language’s native speakers, those of limited competence and learners of Spanish as a foreign language, and uses specific criteria for interpreting the available statistical sources. The data collected and set out using these criteria are presented in two different sections: on the one hand, those pertaining to the ‘Hispanic sphere’ (countries in which Spanish is the official language) and, on the other, those for speakers resident outside it. To the global results is added a comparative analysis with other international languages aimed at gaining a more precise idea of the Spanish language’s place in the world’s demographic and linguistic scenario.

Suggested Citation

  • Francisco Moreno Fernández & Jaime Otero Roth, 2006. "Demografía de la lengua española," Documentos de Trabajo del Instituto Complutense de Estudios Internacionales 03-06, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Instituto Complutense de Estudios Internacionales.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucm:dticei:03-06

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