Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Last remaining speaker of Native language painstakingly creates dictionarytheeverywhendiner:
The dictionary took seven years. Marie worked on it constantly, sometimes until late at night, writing down remembered words on scraps of paper and typing them up slowly and carefully. Now she and her daughter hold weekly Wukchumni language classes, and she’s recording an audio version of the dictionary with her grandson.
The video and accompanying high school lesson plan seem like a decent introduction to language revitalization, although I’d add a small preemptive caution: I’ve heard from people involved in language revitalization that many aren’t too fond of death metaphors like “dying”, “disappearing”, “extinct”, “saving”, and so on. Words like “endangered”, “struggling”, “precarious”, “sleeping”, and “revitalizing” emphasize the agency of the communities involved, even in the case where a language is brought back into speech from writings and recordings. 
Reblogging again because stuff like this is so important. Please watch the video–it’s so amazing and heart felt.
This is amazing.

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