Endangered Languages Beyond Boundaries


The Seventeenth Conference of the Foundation for Endangered Languages
will take place at Carleton University this Fall.
Dates: Oct 1-4, 2013.
The theme for this year is: Endangered Languages Beyond Boundaries:
Community Connections, Collaborative Approaches, and Cross-Disciplinary Research

See the call for papers at:

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New issue of AlterNative now available

The first issue for 2013 of AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples is now available online and in print. Papers in Volume 9(1) come from the Arctic Circle, to Africa, Japan, Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

Two of the articles centre on indigenous education. Ylva Jannok Nutti considers Sámi teachers’ experiences in Sweden in teaching of mathematics and the necessity for lessons to be taught from the perspective of the local culture – despite the fact that culturally based teaching is not specifically defined. Teachers must adapt as to how and what they teach. The second article by Lone Elizabeth Ketsitlile, Philip Bulawa and Onalenna Tiny Kgathi seeks to understand why appropriate and relevant research methods are crucial when undertaking literary research among Southern Africa’s first indigenous peoples – the San of Botswana. The authors consider and develop an argument articulating the need to include a specific Southern African philosophy (Botho, also known as Ubuntu) as a theoretical framework.

Olivia Guntarik’s article “Dangerous Historiographies: Minoru Hokari’s observations and lived Aboriginal practices of history” considers Australian Aboriginal notions of historiography (the methodology and development of history) which challenge existing and accepted understandings and interpretations of societies’ and cultures’ histories. Alternative interpretations (and solutions) to conventional history are often binarized as minority or oppositional groups and simply accommodated in what continues to be the dominant story.

Rāpata Wiri adds to the growing body of academic work considering New Zealand’s Treaty of Waitangi settlement through the lens of the controversial “Treelords Deal” and the application of mana whenua or Māori custom law. The article looks at the claims made for Central North Island forestry and how certain large iwi misinterpret mana whenua for their own commercial gain at the expense of smaller but significant land-owning iwi in the region.

Canada’s federal and provincial systems of government have been strongly influenced by the nation’s Aboriginal peoples. Or have they? David MacDonald argues any such influences have been largely accidental, and a concerted critique of some conventional study highlights a glossing over of Aboriginal-settler history rather that a detailed engagement with it. Among other things, he advocates the incorporation of Aboriginal notions and concepts of power, justice and decision-making into existing institutions and potential new institutions.

Hiroshi Maruyama examines an ambitious dam project on the Japanese island of Hokkaido and the impact on the local indigenous people, the Ainu. Legislation gives priority to river development yet existing indigenous legislation and policy has yet to take firm steps towards the protection of Ainu indigenous rights. Maruyama’s paper considers the legal system surrounding river development in light of the conservation of Ainu culture and the environment.

The final article “Songlines and touchstones: A study of perinatal health and culture in Greenland” by Ruth Montgomery-Andersen and Ina K. Borup explores how family and community perceive support-giving during the perinatal period. In particular, it focuses on story-telling as a health promotion tool through an ethnographic approach. Content analysis, interviews and dialogues are used to set the stories into a cultural perspective.

Please visit www.alternative.ac.nz to access the content.

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Reading Revolution — Aaron Paquette

A Facebook post from Aaron Paquette (of #Ottawapiskat fame). A message we can all endorse:
Let’s make this the start of something incredible. Join me in a revolution.
What do you get out of it?
The world, chico. And everything in it. This is a commitment that will change your life for the better, forever.

Here’s how it works:
Read one book a week. Without fail.
To understand a thing, read five diverse books on the topic.
Read every day.
Read to your children.
Read to your friends.
Read to your elders.
Share what you’ve read.
Write about it.
And write your own book.

Join the #ReadingRevolution
Education is what gives you ideas. Ideas are what transform the world.
So what do you say? Will you make the commitment?

hay hay,

Aaron Paquette
March 4, 2013

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Education Consultation underway now in Saskatoon


My friend Nancy Greyeyes sent this photo from Saskatoon, where this “consultation” is now underway. As she observes, “Consultation with whom?”


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Breath of Life Archival Institute for North American Indigenous Languages

Breath of Life Archival Institute for Indigenous Languages
Washington, DC, June 10-21, 2013

Call for applications: Application Deadline: March 1, 2013

We invite Native Americans and First Nations people who are learning and revitalizing their languages, and graduate students, faculty and other scholars who specialize in Linguistics (preferably in Native American or First Nations languages) to apply to participate in the Breath of Life Archival Institute for Indigenous Languages (BoL). BoL is designed to promote active collaboration among people with a wide range of perspectives about language and culture, including technical linguistic knowledge and cultural expertise. Participants will be grouped into research teams, based on language, made up of linguists and Native community language researchers. Team members will actively work together, mentor one another, and share their expertise throughout the program and beyond. The research teams will explore archives and museum collections at the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian Institution, with morning workshops on linguistics, language teaching and learning, archival research and language revitalization held at the National Museum of the American Indian. The two weeks of study will culminate in a research project and presentation that uses archival or museum resources for linguistic research or language teaching. Beyond a general commitment to language learning from archival sources, participants must be willing and able to attend and actively participate in the entire Institute. Aside from truly unforeseen circumstances, it will not be possible to arrive late, leave early, or to skip the required workshops and events (though some workshops will be optional). Participants will stay in the dorms at George Washington University, where they can network and study together in the evenings. BoL will pay for participants’ rooms, and partially subsidize food and travel. BoL will accept 60 participants. This is a great opportunity to find and use archival materials to reclaim, learn, and teach indigenous languages, in the company of other like-minded people. To find out more and to fill out an application please visit: http://www.endangeredlanguagefund.org/BOL_2013_home.php

The 2013 Breath of Life Institute is funded by the Documenting Endangered Languages Program of the National Science Foundation. Partners include the National Museum of Natural History, The National Museum of the American Indian, the Library of Congress, The Endangered Language Fund and Yale University. Also, like Breath of Life on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/breathoflifedc?ref=stream.

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CILLDI 2013 poster

Follow links below for course/program and bursary information:

CILLDI 2013 Official Information Letter

2013 CILLDI Bursary Application

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Giving the Gift of Language Workshop

Native languages around the globe are disappearing at alarming rates. For many the struggle to maintain endangered languages has reached a point of crisis. Accelerated Second Language Acquisition©™ (ASLA) a language instructional method developed by Dr. Neyooxet Greymorning in response to the growing concern among Indigenous peoples to maintain their languages is currently one of the most effective and beneficial training workshops for language instruction and acquisition offered, and is currently being used in 17 US states, 3 Australian states and 11 out of 13 provinces in Canada . If you are involved with language instruction and are looking to strengthen or improve on language instruction as well as strengthen or enhance the language learning ability of students, regardless of whether they are 3 or 60, see the information for the Giving the Gift of Language teacher training workshop at <http://<https://messaging.umt.edu/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://>www.nsilc.org/> This website offers more language learning results, by showing examples of students using an Indigenous North America language, than possibly any other site on the internet. At the website you can read comments from students and instructors who have used this break through method for second language acquisition and instruction, read summary entries journaling instruction of language classes taught by Dr. Greymorning at the University of Montana, and watch videos of seven different stories being told (not read) in an Indigenous language by students who learned through ASLA. If you are interested in students achieving language competency and are interested in attending you can also find the registration form for the training workshop at t!

The website. If you are not involved with language instruction but know someone who might be interested in attending for the sake of language restoration and revitalization, please pass this on. Thank you.

Neyooxet Greymorning, professor
Departments of Anthropology and Native American Studies
The University of Montana
406) 243-6381 fax: 406) 243-4918
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