Language Revitalization

Language Revitalization Working Group

The Language Revitalization Working Group critically examines theories, methodologies, and applications of language revitalization in a variety of world contexts. It provides a centralized venue for interdisciplinary researchers and practitioners of language revitalization to share, present, discuss, and improve their language revitalization efforts.

Ko receives FEL grant

March 6, 2020

Congrats to Edwin Ko, who has just been awarded a Foundation for Endangered Languages grant for his project entitled Development of Northern Pomo language revitalization camps!

Bardagil organizes Manoki language school

February 29, 2020

Postdoc Bernat Bardagil writes to share that he has just organized the 2nd Watjuho Ja'a School, an intensive language school for the Manoki language, a variety of the isolate language Mỹky. It took place at the village of Cravari, in western Mato Grosso, Brazil.

Manoki language school

Nee paper to appear in L2 Journal

February 20, 2020

Congrats to Julia Nee, whose paper Creating Books for Use in Language Revitalization Classrooms: Considerations and Outcomes will be coming out in the Spring 2020 edition of L2 Journal! You can access the paper here.

Rosenblum colloq

November 15, 2019

The 2019-2020 colloquium series continues this coming Monday, Nov 18, with a talk by Daisy Rosenblum (UBC). Same time as always, same place as always: 3:10-5 p.m., 370 Dwinelle Hall. The talk is entitled Nouns, Noun Phrases, and other Referential Resources in Kʷak̓ʷala, and the abstract is as follows:

This paper explores the status, constituency and distributive patterning of Kʷak̓ʷala Noun Phrases in a corpus of recently recorded spontaneous interaction, and examines them alongside other referential resources available to speakers. Kʷak̓ʷala – along with other Wakashan languages, and neighboring Salishan languages – has challenged some of our ideas about how categories such as ‘Noun’ and ‘Verb’ work in grammar. However, while lexical roots in Kʷak̓ʷala and other Wakashan languages may not easily sort themselves into self-evident ‘Noun’ and ‘Verb’ categories (cf. Bach 1968, Jacobsen 1979, Kinkade 1983; Demirdache & Matthewson 1995; inter alia), syntactic predicates and arguments are clear within conversational data, and Kʷak̓ʷala lexical argument phrases align well with our expectations of ‘NP’ as a category. In considering how lexical reference in Kʷak̓ʷala relates to other referring resources in the language, such as (so-called) ‘lexical suffixes,’ I also ask what we can understand from examining bilingual speakers’ translations of their Kʷak̓ʷala into English, and explore how Kʷak̓ʷala lexical reference compares with patterns of Preferred Argument Structure and other information management constraints found cross-linguistically (cf. Chafe 1984; DuBois 1987). Examining these and other questions for Kʷak̓ʷala allows a nuanced and emergent analysis of what is meant by the category ‘Noun Phrase’ in Kʷak̓ʷala, identifies functions NPs serve in Kʷak̓ʷala grammar in use, and informs our understanding of how to develop useful materials for teachers and learners engaged in Kʷak̓ʷala revitalization.

Bardagil travels

November 14, 2019

Postdoc Bernat Bardagil writes to share that he is now in Rio de Janeiro, taking part in the Viva Língua Viva language revitalization conference, organized by the Museu do Índio and UNESCO. Here is Bernat with two members of the Manoki community, Edivaldo Nãpuxi and Dario Kanuxi, in Rio:

Bernat Bardagil and colleagues in Rio

Application period opens for DE in Indigenous Language Revitalization

October 16, 2019

Graduate students are invited to apply for the Designated Emphasis in Indigenous Language Revitalization, for which the application period is now open. A Designated Emphasis is like a graduate minor. As detailed here, the DE in Indigenous Language Revitalization creates an interdisciplinary course of study, drawing together an intellectual cohort that will equip graduate students from various departments with knowledge of the methods, histories, and goals of indigenous language revitalization and reclamation. The DE emphasizes interdisciplinary coursework and hands-on experience (through practicum or fieldwork credits) that center on the critical methods and histories of the attempted eradication, the persistence, and the revitalization of indigenous languages in the context of colonization. While the content of the DE primarily focuses on indigenous contexts in the Americas, it is relevant to indigenous settings elsewhere.

Applications are due on November 2! See application information here.

Group in American Indian Languages (GAIL)

The Group in American Indian Languages (GAIL) meets periodically each semester and brings together individuals interested in indigenous languages of the Americas for a potluck dinner and presentation. News about recent and upcoming events can be found below, and a list of past talks can be found here. If you would like to receive periodic emails updating you about our activities, join the Friends of the Survey email list by writing to scoil-ling@berkeley.edu.  

Graduate Field Methods Course History

This page summarizes the history of graduate instruction in linguistic field methods at Berkeley, with information about academic year, language(s), consultant(s), and instructor(s), when known. The information has been reconstructed from archival course catalogs, which occasionally do not reflect the ultimate instructor of record, and in consultation with Linguistics faculty, graduate students, alumni, and records in the Survey of California and Other Indian Languages. We will continue to update it as we learn more.