We will never speak a single language, or agree on the best way to organize society and politics for "the good life." How do macro-politics affect the language(s) we choose to speak? What public policy initiatives can be deployed so that language is an accessible resource for all? Are there such things as language rights, and how can they be distributed and defended? These questions are not just academic, but essential to understanding the world(s) that we inhabit. This course takes a global and historical approach to the politics of language, examining the relationships between language, society, and the state.