Foundation for Endangered Languages

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OGMIOS Newsletter 3.02 (#26): 30 April 2005
ISSN 1471-0382 Editor: Nicholas D. M. Ostler

1. Development of the Foundation
FEL Grants 2005
FEL IX - "Creating Outsiders: Endangered Languages, Migration and Marginalization"- Stellenbosch, S. Africa, 18-20 Nov. 2005

2. Endangered Languages in the News
BBC: In defence of 'lost' languages
Language intergroup to work more closely with the council of Europe
Center Works to Preserve Yiddish a Book at a Time
Watchdog to investigate ‘only 7% Welsh language’ radio station
Preservation of ethnic minority languages urged on China

3. Appeals, News and Views from Endangered Communities
Paraguay: Congress Rejects Bill to Protect Isolated Indians
Appeal on Behalf of Mari People
Blackfeet Tribal youth offers invocation in State Senate
Vietnamese programme to preserve Cham language
Inuktitut should be third Canadian language
Evaluating Language Nests in B.C.
Miami tribe fighting to save language publishes dictionary
Online technology used to preserve Choctaw language
Inuit Sign Language could open courts to the deaf: official recognition, interpreter training in Canada
Elders honored for helping keep native language, traditions alive
Ex-Post Evaluation of EC Activities with Regional and Minority Languages 1998-2002

4. Allied Societies and Activities
News from Native Languages of America
Salish Language Papers Sought

5. Analysis of Some Language Situations
Recent Change in Language Communities Of Nepal - B. K. Rana
The Modern Status of Irish, and the Irish Commissioner's Report - Jeff Kallen
Scots Gaelic Act: Hip Hip Ho-Hum - Murdo MacLeod

6. Reports on Field Research
A survey of Dogon languages in Mali: overview - Roger Blench
Ba?gi me, a language of unknown affiliation in Northern Mali
Dogon survey I: Tebul Ure, a language of the Dogon group in Northern Mali

7. Overheard on the Web
EU Constitution to be Translated into Welsh, but Not Other UK Languages
Dutch foreign minister announces Frisian translation of the European Constitution
University of Hawaii Students set up Documentation Centre for Endangered Languages
Mbeki calls for preservation of indigenous languages
Guatemalan Linguists Introduce New Software Prototype for K'iche'
Bilingual Education and Frisian Politics
Proud first-graders now say: Cherokee spoken here

8. Places to Go - On the Net and in the World
Foreign Language Resource Centers
Strategic National Planning and Coordination for the Less Commonly Taught Languages — a project for the national US/ED Title VI community
Indigenous Languages and Technology
Northern California Indian Development Council - Archive
Southern Oregon Digital Archives (SODA)
SIL Electronic Working Papers SILEWP 2005-008
Language and cultural diversity in North-West Frontier Province

9. Forthcoming Meetings
Power and Powerless: Ideology and Practice in Indigenous Communities 6 Jun - 1 Jul 2005
Linguistic Society of America 2005 Institute - Language Courses 27 Jun - 5 Aug 2005
E-MELD 2005 Linguistic Ontologies and Data Categories in Morphosyntactic Annotation, 1-3 Jul 2005 The 14th World Congress of Applied Linguistics, 24-29 Jul 2005
New Directions in American Indian Research: A Gathering of Emerging Scholars 7-8 Oct 2005
The Cornell Conference on Language and Poverty, 14-16 Oct 2005
IV Mercator International Symposium "Translation of Culture, Culture of Translation: Languages in Film, Television and Literature" Mercator-Media, Aberystwyth 26-28 Oct 2005

10. Recent Publications
Pacific Linguistics Mercator-Education: European Network for Regional or Minority Languages and Education
The European Bureau for Lesser Used Languages
De wrald yn bitterswiet ( The World in Bittersweet)
Sound Materials of the Nivkh Language 3 - Pygsk

11. Book Reviews
The Languages of Native North America - Marianne Mithun

Incidence of FEL Grants and Conferences 1997 - 2005

This issue of Ogmios announces our latest awards, as well as the site and theme of our next conference.

We have had an excellent year financially, which has put us in a position for the first time to do something approaching justice to the range of excellent grant applications which come to us every year. This year we were able to fund one proposal out of every four, awarding US$15,500 in all, almost as much money as we distributed in the all the first six years of our grants programme. The map shows where these grants have been directed, this year and in all the years before, and it is clear that our influence, light though it is, is being felt in many of the most inaccessible parts of the world. Some idea of the variety of work which is being proposed, and will be funded, can be derived from the descriptions of projects in section 2. The manifold role of electronic technology, from dictionary databases to video records of story-telling, is quite notable in these short descriptions. Such technology often provides a concrete target for some action to highlight and utilize a language in a new way; but the challenge always remains for each language’s speakers, to bring these new media into active use. FEL retains its aspiration to go on supporting these projects in future, so as to build durable links between concerned funders and speakers.

But like Robert Bly’s wrens ‘who make their nests of fancy threads and string ends’(Listening to the Köln Concert), we are just ‘animals [who] abandon all their money each year’. FEL is now once again penniless, but not hopeless: we rely on an apparent determination, steadily growing among people all over the world, that something must and shall be done, to value and protect the vast human heritage of languages. Thank you for supporting this.