Definitions for mapudungun

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word mapudungun


  1. Mapudungun(ProperNoun)

    A language isolate spoken in Chile and Argentina by the Mapuche people.

  2. Origin: mapu + dungun


  1. Mapudungun Language

    Mapudungun is a language isolate spoken in south-central Chile and west central Argentina by the Mapuche people. It is also spelled Mapuzugun and Mapudungu, and was formerly known as Araucanian. The latter was the name given to the Mapuche by the Spaniards. Today the Mapuche avoid this exonym as a remnant of Spanish colonialism, and it is considered offensive. Mapudungun is not an official language of Chile or Argentina, and has received virtually no government support throughout its history. It is not used as a language of instruction in either country’s educational system, despite the Chilean government's commitment to provide full access to education in Mapuche areas in southern Chile. There is an ongoing political debate over which alphabet to use as the standard alphabet of written Mapudungun. There are approximately 144,000 native speakers in Chile and another 8,400 in west central Argentina. Only 2.4% of urban speakers and 16% of rural speakers use Mapudungun when speaking with children, whereas only 3.8% of speakers aged 10–19 years in the south of Chile are "highly competent" in the language.


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