don't sleepFollowing on from my last post about books on language, I’ve just finished reading Daniel Everett’s Don’t Sleep, There Are Snakes.

Everett was a Christian missionary who intended to convert a small tribe of Amazonians called the Pirahã. The book traces a large part of his life as he lives with the Pirahã tribe and learns their language.

The book is split into two sections, with the first half focussing on Pirahã life and Everett’s experiences of living with them, and the second half on linguistic theory. Whilst for me it sometimes got a bit too technical in the second half, it’s well worth the effort to learn about the conclusions Everett has come to about the impact of culture on language, something that is not just applicable to the Pirahã, but all of us.

Has anyone else read the book? What did you think?