Author: Jonathan Pool
Source: Slavic Review, Vol. 35, No. 3 (Sep., 1976), pp. 425-442
Published by: The American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies
Jonathan Pool, born 1942, is a political scientist. He works on the political and economic consequences of linguistic circumstances and language policy. Pool studied political science in Harvard between 1960 and 1964. He then studied in Chicago, where he graduated in 1968 and earned his PhD in 1971. Pool has always been impressed by the degree to which peoples' first language and lingustic knowledge influence their lives. When, as a nine-year-old, he had a friend whose parents had immigrated from Brazil, he decided to learn Portuguese while his friend learned English, for reasons of fairness. In 1991 he published a research paper proposing an economic compensation for the need to learn languages. This was an early form of the concept of a language tax.