The small, independent publisher Diglot Books has successfully published the bilingual book “Matthew and the Wellington Boots,” written in English and Cornish, on Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing. This was finally achieved after the strong media campaign that Diglot Books launched as a reaction to Amazon’s initial refusal to publish the book. The reason they gave for the decision was that the Cornish language was not supported by Kindle Direct Publishing, as they were only working with books in English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish, Catalan, Galician, and Basque.
Even though Amazon recognized having an intention to increase the miniscule number of languages on Kindle Direct Publishing, the fact that Cornish uses the same alphabet as English made Amazon’s argument rather meaningless. After some media backslash on the issue, Amazon had to take the decision back and finally went ahead with the publication of the book called “Matthew ha’n Eskisyow Glaw” in Cornish.
With approximately 40% of the world’s languages classified as “endangered”, Diglot Books decided to fight against the possible extinction of such a meaningful part of culture by publishing the world’s first Cornish Children’s book. Targeting the younger generations is a way to ensure future speakers and, with them, the survival of the language.