Log In

Wangka Walkatjurra Culture Centre: Goldfields Aboriginal Languages Project

The project to begin preservation of the Goldfields Aboriginal languages commenced in July 2011. The initial focus was to work on two of the Goldfield’s languages, Ngalia and Tjupan in Leonora. However, this has been expanded to include the Koara language, also of Leonora and the Kaalamaya language of the Kubrun people in Kalgoorlie.

Field linguist, Sue Hanson, met with a wide range of people to discuss the project and the processes used in language collection. The project has much community support with many people stating they were very pleased to see the project commence.

A workshop was held in Leonora on Tuesday 29th November 2011 for people interested in learning more about the collection and preservation of Aboriginal languages, and specifically about this project.

The linguistic work will develop an understanding of the variety of Western Desert Languages of the region. This will be undertaken through the collection and analysis of data on these languages and will develop a better understanding of the status of these languages and the need for further documentation and revival work.

This information will provide a basis that will enable a wide range of valuable future work, ranging from technical documentation of the little- described languages of the region, through to materials that can be used to preserve the languages as living communication systems and/or may be used to revitalise them, now or at some future time.

This kind of work has proven extremely valuable in other parts of Australia. Little of this kind of work has been done previously in the Gold?elds region. There are still numerous speakers of the WDLs of the region; but this situation is not likely to last. Some of the languages may be close to dying or in fact dead. Language research work will enable linguists to determine the status of each language.

Doug Marmion, of AIATSIS was the linguist who undertook the preliminary work in the Goldfields in 2008 and said, ‘In my time working in the Gold?elds region I was approached a number of times by members of the various language groups and my advice sought as to how they could go about arranging to have work done on their languages. In every case they expressed concern that the usage of their language was declining  and little was being done in terms of either documentation, or to supporting their maintenance.’

The outcomes for the project are not just the preservation of the languages, but the recording of life stories and reconnecting people, culture and country through thier languages.

The project is funded mostly by the Federal Government. The Ngalia Foundation, a partnership between the National Trust of Western Australia and the Ngalia Heritage Research Council is the grants recipient and funding administrator. The Walkatjurra Cultural Centre is the community based organisation managing the project on the ground. Sue Hanson is the primary linguist and she is supported by field linguists, technical linguists and Aboriginal language workers. The Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies works with the Ngalia Foundation in undertaking this project as a field of study site.

wpcf-name:
Wangka Walkatjurra Culture Centre: Goldfields Aboriginal Languages Project
wpcf-body:

The project to begin preservation of the Goldfields Aboriginal languages commenced in July 2011. The initial focus was to work on two of the Goldfield’s languages, Ngalia and Tjupan in Leonora. However, this has been expanded to include the Koara language, also of Leonora and the Kaalamaya language of the Kubrun people in Kalgoorlie.

Field linguist, Sue Hanson, met with a wide range of people to discuss the project and the processes used in language collection. The project has much community support with many people stating they were very pleased to see the project commence.

A workshop was held in Leonora on Tuesday 29th November 2011 for people interested in learning more about the collection and preservation of Aboriginal languages, and specifically about this project.

The linguistic work will develop an understanding of the variety of Western Desert Languages of the region. This will be undertaken through the collection and analysis of data on these languages and will develop a better understanding of the status of these languages and the need for further documentation and revival work.

This information will provide a basis that will enable a wide range of valuable future work, ranging from technical documentation of the little- described languages of the region, through to materials that can be used to preserve the languages as living communication systems and/or may be used to revitalise them, now or at some future time.

This kind of work has proven extremely valuable in other parts of Australia. Little of this kind of work has been done previously in the Gold?elds region. There are still numerous speakers of the WDLs of the region; but this situation is not likely to last. Some of the languages may be close to dying or in fact dead. Language research work will enable linguists to determine the status of each language.

Doug Marmion, of AIATSIS was the linguist who undertook the preliminary work in the Goldfields in 2008 and said, ‘In my time working in the Gold?elds region I was approached a number of times by members of the various language groups and my advice sought as to how they could go about arranging to have work done on their languages. In every case they expressed concern that the usage of their language was declining  and little was being done in terms of either documentation, or to supporting their maintenance.’

The outcomes for the project are not just the preservation of the languages, but the recording of life stories and reconnecting people, culture and country through thier languages.

The project is funded mostly by the Federal Government. The Ngalia Foundation, a partnership between the National Trust of Western Australia and the Ngalia Heritage Research Council is the grants recipient and funding administrator. The Walkatjurra Cultural Centre is the community based organisation managing the project on the ground. Sue Hanson is the primary linguist and she is supported by field linguists, technical linguists and Aboriginal language workers. The Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies works with the Ngalia Foundation in undertaking this project as a field of study site.

wpcf-address:

PO Box 3149,

Midland. WA. 6056.

Ph: 044891 7437

wpcf-website:
http://wangka.org.au/
wpcf-email:
susanhanson@y7mail.com
wpcf-socialbookmarks:
1

Leave a Reply

20°C

Sydney

Partly Cloudy

Humidity 88%

Wind 11.27 km/h

  • 26 Mar 201726°C16°C
  • 27 Mar 201727°C19°C