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Foundation for Endangered Languages

News on the Web

News and articles about endangered languages on the Web:

Catholic Church in Americas moves to accept indigenous languages
[22-12-2013]
For centuries, the Catholic Church in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas has only officially delivered church services in either Latin or Spanish. But now...
This could be seen as the converse - or the complement - of the last pope's embrace of Latin! But the article mentions only Tzotzil and Tzeltal explicitly...
international workshops and training courses on language documentation and revitalisation in 2014
[18-12-2013]
The first workshop, hosted by the Linguistic Dynamics Science Project, will take place on 19-25 February at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies; the second, hosted by Stockholm University, will take place on 23 June – 4 July in Stockholm and the third, ho
These may be a good way for those wishing to add expertise to enthusiasm.
Plants, animals, words: a multidisciplinary workshop: SOAS 19-21 Sept 2013
[10-09-2013]
A workshop to encourage interdisciplinary research in the areas of linguistics and ethno-biology by bringing together researchers from these fields and others. Sharing of perspectives, followed by hands-on skills workshops and presentations, case studies.
jointly organized by the linguists Lydia Green (PhD candidate, University of Newcastle, Australia), Sophie Mu and Ebany Dohle (PhD students, SOAS, University of London) and Dr Candide Simard (post-doctoral researcher, SOAS, University of London).
Call for Papers: LTC Workshop on "Less Resourced Languages, new technologies, new challenges and opportunities",
[06-09-2013]
Submission deadline: 22 September 2013, for Conference in Poznan, Poland, 8 December 2013
Many of these languages may be considered endangered.
Great Language Game - how many languages can you recognize aurally?
[06-09-2013]
The task is to identify a snatch of news report in an arbitrary language, with a multiple-choice option. A fine test of linguistic wit.
Points do not (sadly) mean prizes, but you may be interested - indeed challenged - to know that, at present, no Committee member has scored over 950!
Rapping in Saami
[02-09-2013]
Nils Rune Utsi is the founding member of Slincraze, a rap group from Maze, a village in northern Norway.
Brief audio comparison with joik.
Baktun: Telenovela (soap opera) in Yukatek Maya
[11-08-2013]
Baktun (pronounced bak-TOON) refers to a megacycle of the Mayan Long Count calendar and was deliberately chosen as the title in light of the attention it received in December 2012. "Cycle" as a concept keeps coming back!
First soap in an indigenous language? Given the great success of "Pobl y Cwm" in Wales, probably not.
Reviving Yurok: Saving one of California's 90 languages
[26-06-2013]
BBC short feature on revival activity re California's biggest surviving indigenous language
Strong on singing!
Survival of Texas German
[15-05-2013]
The BBC reports Hans Boas's study of this vanishing dialect, a long way from home.
Hans Boas has discussed this at FEL VII in Broome, West Australia (2003), but it is not in the Proceedings volume.
Barngarla reclamation workshop, Whyalla, South Australia
[13-05-2013]
Barngala restoration proceeds, as one language among many in South Australia.
FEL committee member Ghil'ad Zuckermann doing his bit for his local linguistic heritage, and its speakers, past and future.
Kindle publisher reverses refusal to handle Cornish text
[09-04-2013]
UK press Diglot Books takes on the might of Amazon to get its Cornish children's story out to readers, after being told that Matthew and the Wellington Boots (Kernewek: Matthew ha'n Eskisyow Glaw ) was in a language that is "not currently supported".
The article discusses some of the issues in ensuring that minority languages can be part of electronic publishing.
World Oral Literature Project pauses and takes stock...
[03-04-2013]
This impressive collection is not receiving the new funding it had applied for, hence is closed to new additions.
It therefore becomes an extremely well-appointed archive site.
17th edition of SIL Ethnologue, showing every language's relative strength
[14-03-2013]
Newly introduced in this edition is an estimate of the level of development versus endangerment for every language listed. These estimates use the EGIDS, or Expanded Graded Intergenerational Disruption Scale ( based on the GIDS of Joshua Fishman).
This edition of Ethnologue also lists 375 languages that were known to be in use in 1950 and which are extinct today.
Kaurna revival in Australia
[22-01-2013]
emphasizing the role of historical records, but also the attempt to re-enter the tradition of child transmission
Glad to see the BBC refers back to the FEL XIV conference in Carmarthen (2010): "Reversing Language Shift".
Our Language in Your Hands
[27-11-2012]
This is a new BBC Radio 4 series, presented by the World Oral Literature Project, broadcast at 11:00-11:30am GMT on Mondays 3, 10 and 17 December 2012, and subsequently available on podcast.
The topics will be the linguistic landscapes of Eastern Nepal (Thangmi), South Africa and New York City.
Kudiyattam - Creating and Destroying the Universe in Twenty-Nine Nights
[26-11-2012]
An ancient and rare art-form in an amalgam of classical languages (Sanskrit and Malayalam), if not an endangered one.
Smithsonian Folklife Festival 2013 to feature endangered languages
[29-10-2012]
This annual cultural event of Washington DC, now in its 5th decade, will this year feature the theme "One World, Many Voices: Endangered Languages and Cultural Heritage".
It will run June 26–June 30 and July 3–July 7, 2013.
Can the young be saviours of regional dialects?
[19-10-2012]
Considers the value of sustaining English dialects in the UK.
Getting into the "dialect/language" issue does not, in general, tend to edification. But all linguistic markers of identity have some value in the scheme of things.
Lakota Immersion Childcare
[06-09-2012]
We are creating an Lakota immersion daycare here on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, the second-poorest county in the US, before the language becomes extinct.
There has not been a FEL grants round this year, but here is an opportunity for any of us to make a difference to the prospects of a highly-endangered language.
Ghil'ad Zuckermann hits the ground running Aotearoa
[06-09-2012]
Language revival expert calls for native tongue title.
... says the loss of language is more damaging than the loss of land for indigenous peoples, and governments are likely to come under increasing pressure to compensate indigenous peoples for this loss too.
Australia's NT government quietly abandons "bilingual ban" in Aboriginal schools
[16-08-2012]
Marion Scrymgour: “What I got wrong was saying kids will only be speaking English for the first four hours of school … saying kids won’t be able to speak their own language was a huge mistake of mine, and I've moved on."
The sun also rises (if discreetly).
Paraguayan thrash metal band keeps it real with native tongue
[10-08-2012]
Use of Guaraní language in new rock music
This is the second video in a series by BBC Mundo's Vladimir Hernandez about new native melodies coming out of Latin America ahead of the International Day of Indigenous Peoples which is celebrated by the United Nations every August 9.
The duo fusing the Argentine Qom dialect with electronica
[10-08-2012]
Qom is a dialect of the Toba language, spoken in the Gran Chaco.
This is the last episode in a series by BBC Mundo's Vladimir Hernandez.
Chilean Mapuches preserve linguistic heritage through hip-hop
[08-08-2012]
Rap in the Mapudungun language
In Mysore, Keeping Sanskrit Alive on Newsprint
[20-07-2012]
The other side of endangerment: "dead" celebrity languages that will not lie down.
Jaya jaya jaya
Nicholas Ostler on the History and Diversity of Language
[10-07-2012]
My conversation with Toby Ash on "Five Books on the Browser".
A chance to say how good Nick Evans' "Dying Words" is!
Institute aims to keep languages alive
[10-07-2012]
The CoLang 2012 Institute on Collaborative Language Research, is a six-week opportunity for participants to become better trained in linguistic documentation.
Vignettes with experts on Uda (Nigeria), and Tamazight (Morocco).
Endangered languages - A project by the Alliance for Linguistic Diversity, under Google
[21-06-2012]
The Endangered Languages Project, is an online resource to record, access, and share samples of and research on endangered languages, as well as to share advice and best practices for those working to document or strengthen languages under threat.
Appears to require registration, and some granting of rights to Google, before outsiders can contribute to this.
Vanishing Voices
[20-06-2012]
a series from National Geographic
- colourful, poignant views of some languages, phrases and speakers
Endangered Languages Quiz from the BBC
[31-05-2012]
Seven questions to dig a little deeper in the substance of the languages.
Your credibility is on the line... but no-one will ever know how you did!
Language Revitalization in the 21st century: Going Global, Staying Local
[30-05-2012]
a 2-day symposium at CUNY, in New York City, 31 May to 1 June 2012, featuring Joshua Fishman, the undoubted doyen of endangered languages and their revitalisation.
AUT (the Auckland University of Technology) is a co-host. They are also FEL's partner for our forthcoming conference in New Zealand (12-15 Sept. 2012).
War of words over tribal tongue
[10-05-2012]
An article in Nature gives a basic view of the controversy over Pirãhã, which Daniel Everett argues falsifies a key Chomskyan claim about Universal Grammar.
This kind of argument is central to the theoretical importance of preserving endangered languages.
Endangered Languages Week
[07-05-2012]
Endangered Languages Week 2012 presents a variety of talks, displays, discussions, films, lectures and workshops.
Another feast of fun from Hans Rausing Endangered Language Programme
Sealaska Heritage Institute publishes atlas of Native place names
[18-04-2012]
a landmark book documenting more than 3,000 Native place names and their locations in Southeast Alaska.
Sound archives of endangered languages in St.Petersburg
[13-04-2012]
One of the documentary films of the Frisian Broadcasting Company Omrop Fryslân on the national TV in the Netherlands (2001) which shows the position of some minority languages in Eastern Europe and the Russian Federation and the work related to the study
The first film in this series describes the reconstruction of historical sound material in the archives of the Pushkinsky Dom, the Russian Institute of Literature in Saint-Petersburg. It shows the collection of Edison wax cylinders and the way material of
Language Hunters
[12-04-2012]
This is a practical technique to pick up languages from (co-operative!) native speakers. It uses a "copy-cat" method, and elements of sign language.
There is also quite a charming video of language hunting "in the wild" at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s87Dn5Nz-cM
Society of Ethnobiology 2012 conference, "Conservation and Communities"
[28-03-2012]
April 11–14, 2012 at the Denver Botanic Gardens in Colorado. Explores the importance and power of linking conservation efforts to communities.
Lost Words - a documentary film to be
[07-03-2012]
A story of Native Americans fighting to save their endangered languages, a film projected by Brian McDermott, (Producer/Director) (email: cfafilm@hotmail.com).
This gives visitors the opportunity to assist the funding of the film, at various levels of recognition.
Fourth International 3L Summer School - 1-13 July 2012 Lyon, France
[01-03-2012]
This 3L Lyon 2012 edition concentrates on the theme of Endangered Languages Revitalisation. The main objective will be to create a space of reflexion in an academic setting on the growing number of projects of revitalisation around the world.
Digital tools 'to save languages'
[22-02-2012]
Facebook, YouTube and even texting will be the salvation of many of the world's endangered languages, it is suggested. Examples here from Tuvan (Turkic, Siberia) and Siletz Dee-ni (Salishan, NW America) better known as Tillamook.
This highlights activities of the Living Tongues Institute For Endangered Languages
First Person: Brian Stowell
[11-02-2012]
The writer published a full-length novel in Manx, a language that only 200 people can read.
ON THE ROAD WITH BOB HOLMAN - Endangered Languages
[25-01-2012]
Encounter the distinct cultures and peoples of West Africa, Asia and the Middle East in the three-part documentary On the Road with Bob Holman and discover ancient languages on the brink of extinction: Timbuktu, Dogon, Palestine, Israel.
These episodes air February 1, 8, and 15, 2012. CONTACT: Ram Devineni / devineni@rattapallax.com / Phone: +1-646-416-4702
Cymdeithas at 50
[25-01-2012]
A series of articles celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Welsh language pressure group Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg (The Welsh Language Society).
Half a century ago; When dreams become reality; Attaining psychological freedom; How devolution is changing the campaign; Making the campaign fit for the future.
We Still Live Here
[12-01-2012]
Jessie Little Doe Baird and the revival of the Wampanoag language of Massachusetts
"The brightest star of this film is the language itself.” — Nataly Kelly, Huffington Post. And Jessie has also been honoured with a MacArthur Fellowship.
SEC Seminar – Preserving Endangered Languages and Local Knowledge
[11-01-2012]
Learning tools and community initiatives in cross-cultural discussion
"Apple Siri, Google Voice could help save the world's languages."
[18-11-2011]
300 widely spoken languages provide motivation for providers of digital services and devices because this group accounts for 95% of all people on earth. Google's plan to sample 300 languages from around the world to help improve its Voice Search product.
Yeah yeah
Breathing life into a dying language: Documenting Great Andamanese
[25-10-2011]
Lecture by Prof Anvita Abbi at SOAS (London) on 17 November 2011
An opportunity for insight into one of the world's oldest isolate languages.
The endangered art of Arabic storytelling
[05-10-2011]
Whole functions can be endangered, even in a language that is undergoing no threat.
But Iran (and hence Persian) was the main staging point for the rich tradition coming from India into the Muslim world: hence all the main characters in the 1001 Nights (Shahrazad, Shahriyar, Dunyazad...) have Persian names.
Report of the Baikal Conference on Endangered Languages
[05-09-2011]
Regional FEL Conference: ‘Multilingualism and Language Learning in China, Mongolia and Russia’ at Lake Baikal
Library to Rediscover Aboriginal Languages
[29-08-2011]
The State Library in Australia’s New South Wales is putting forth a new project to preserve forgotten or endangered Aboriginal languages.
Article also features link to an Internet guide to Australia’s linguistic heritage, courtesy of David Nathan (at HRELP-ELAR)
US Federal Agencies Act to Document Nearly 50 Endangered Languages
[10-08-2011]
Announcement of the New Grants from NSF: the DEL program for Endangered Language Research, round 7
Itelmen Language and Culture on the web
[08-08-2011]
Sample from the program of the Foundation for Siberian Cultures
Workshop “Linked Data in Linguistics”, March 7 – 9, 2012, Frankfurt/Main
[06-08-2011]
We see the onset of Language Archives, Typological DBs, Lexical-Semantic Resources, Multi-layer Annotations. New sources of data online suggest new ways to link linguistic data and metadata. Abstract deadline 14 August 2011.
Once more, linguistics based in endangered languages is leading the way to new vistas in linguistics.
ELCat - Endangered Languages Catalogue
[03-08-2011]
A new initiative, designed to provide accurate, up-to-date information on the endangered languages of the world, i.e., a definitive catalog of languages at risk. It will correct errors in existing databases and provide new data not available.
This is funded by the US National Science Foundation, and a private donor, who will eliminate the burden of the cost of most of the technology.
Cooperation Yamal-Nenets Autonomous District and Fryske Akademy
[13-07-2011]
Start of a joint program for cooperation in the field of minority languages in Europe and Siberia
Can the Internet Save Endangered Languages?
[07-07-2011]
Care2 (online network for green values, human rights and animal welfare) attends to Endangered Languages...
Mitra videos on endangered languages
[05-07-2011]
An interesting array of different approaches to this concerning issue.
And an e-learning module on the subject, from Cecilia Odé in U. Amst....
[28-06-2011]
Now pentaglossic - in 5 metropolitan languages: in het Nederlands, in English, en español, em português brasileiro, и на русском языке.
Writing Systems for Endangered Languages
[23-06-2011]
ScriptSource is a dynamic, collaborative reference to the writing systems of the world, with detailed information on scripts, characters, languages - and the remaining needs for supporting them in the computing realm.
California Language Archive
[21-06-2011]
A catalog and online archive of the indigenous languages of California, western North America, and the Americas
BBC feature on rock music in Welsh
[21-06-2011]
Discusses the growing popularity of the music against developing language policy (and language consciousness) in Wales.
First Soillse Residential Conference – Call for Papers
[12-06-2011]
MAINTAINING AND REVITALISING MINORITY LANGUAGES IN THEIR ‘HEARTLANDS` 31 August - 3 September 2011 at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI, Sleat, Isle of Skye, Scotland. Abstract Deadline 25 June 2011.
To explore the problems and challenges faced by Scots Gaelic and other minoritised languages in their ‘heartlands’; and the various policy initiatives which have been instituted to address the problems and and challenges they face.
Revival of the Wampanoag Language
[11-06-2011]
One of the award winning films by Anne Makepeace that tell stories of struggle, resilience and transformation
REVIVING LANGUAGE, RESTORING CULTURE
[09-06-2011]
Part of a film festival in the Amsterdam Tropentheater, Friday, 11 June, 14.00 followed by a discussion with the film producer (see program).
Mercator Newsletter Nr.71, May 2011 .
[08-06-2011]
The latest web publication of the Mercator European Center on Multilingualism and Language Learning with news from the five Mercator Network partners.
Fifth International Symposium on Finno-Ugric Languages in Groningen
[08-06-2011]
The Finno-Ugric contribution to international research on folklore, myth and cultural identity. University of Groningen, 7 to 9 June 2011
Inuinnaqtun Tuhaalanga - Learn the Inuit Language Online
[28-05-2011]
A recently released website for self-teaching (Canadian) Inuit languages, focuing on teaching Inuktitut as it is spoken in everyday situations.
Miners in British Columbia dig deep to save their ancestral languages
[09-05-2011]
Raising funds to save what is dear to them, they note that language suppression in schools may do greater long-term damage even than child abuse.
Achuar resistance to Oil drilling in the Peruvian Amazon
[05-05-2011]
A short video on the Achuar environment, and a chance to sign a petition, for submission to Talisman Energy. The organization sponsoring the petition is Amazon Watch. The Achuar will feature in this year's FEL XV conference in Quito.
Endangered Languages Week at SOAS, 9 - 14 May 2011
[02-05-2011]
A week of talks, displays, discussions, films, lectures and workshops. Open day (12 May) includes over 15 exhibitors (including FEL).
Expert Seminar
[02-05-2011]
Expert Seminar on “Cultural Education and Civil Society: How can Languages contribute?” 26 – 28 May 2011, Leeuwarden, The Netherlands
Summer school on Endangered Languages in St. Petersburg
[23-04-2011]
The School will take place from the 27th of June until the 8th of July 2011 at the Philological Faculty of St.-Petersburg State University
Baikal Conference on Endangered Languages
[23-04-2011]
FEL Regional Conference at Lake Baikal on Multilingualism and Language Learning in China, Mongolia and Russia
Minority Language Song Contest Liet International 2011
[23-04-2011]
Held 19 November 2011, Udine, Italy. The only song contest for singers and bands who sing in a European minority language.
Ayapaneco (Mexico) in danger
[22-04-2011]
Apparently the last two fluent speakers refuse to talk to each other
Confronting the Mass Extinction of Languages
[19-04-2011]
A brief history of documentary linguistics, as current tensions arise between different approaches
Passion for preservation
[19-04-2011]
Cultivating Burushaski in Gilgit, and in Denton, Texas
Cowag: Manx Gaelic Skeet
[19-04-2011]
Find out all the skeet from the world of the Manx Gael at this new blog
gaelg's channel
[19-04-2011]
Manx Gaelic News