Kenneth L. Hale Award: Claire Bowern (Yale University)

Excellent news! Claire Bowern (see also Anggarrgoon) has been awarded the Kenneth L. Hale Award. Here’s the LSA’s commendation. Claire Bowern and her work is the embodiment of the qualities that the Linguistic Society of America would like to see in a Hale award winner. Claire has been involved with documentation of the Bardi language … Read more

CALC (Central Australian Linguistic Circle) meeting

Central Australian Linguistic Circle (CALC) 2013  Monday 9 September 2013, 8:30 am – 4:00 pm Venue: Desert People’s Centre Function Room (next to the Irrarnte Café), Desert Knowledge Precinct, South Stuart Highway, Alice Springs Map: http://desertpeoplescentre.org.au/contact-us/ Program: 8:30 am          meet at Desert People’s Centre Function Room, set up, introductions 9:00-9:30      Cathy Bow, Charles … Read more

Rejoicing at AUSTRALEX

AUSTRALEX held its biennial conference in a surprisingly green Adelaide, and the tall gums were filled with birds rejoicing. It was the biggest AUSTRALEX conference I’ve ever been to, a range of speakers from around the world, the first one with parallel sessions, and by far the greatest media coverage of any Australian linguistics/lexicography conference … Read more

Researching child language in the field: October LIP

Ruth Singer recaps some of the interesting points of the last week’sLinguistics in the Pub, an informal gathering of linguists and language activists that is held monthly in Melbourne A number of linguists in Melbourne have recently begun documenting child language in the field. In the November 2011 LIP we discussed what you need to … Read more

And another new book and conference

Moving from Nigeria to Australia… We in Australia owe thanks to Maïa Ponsonnet, Loan Dao and Margit Bowler, who have shepherded the Proceedings of the 42th ALS Conference – 2011 to publication online on the ANU Research Repository in close to record time. Papers on lesser-known languages (old, new, created) include: On Australian languages (old … Read more

Crowd-sourcing and Language documentation: September LIP

Ruth Singer recaps some of the interesting points of the last week’s Linguistics in the Pub, an informal gathering of linguists and language activists that is held monthly in Melbourne The most recent LIP included a demonstration of the Ma! Iwaidja phrasebook and dictionary app developed by the Minjilang Endangered Languages Publication project (publishing as Iwaidja … Read more

Kim Scott and the Wirlomin Noongar Language and Stories Project

Kim Scott gave a talk in Melbourne last night titled “Language & Nation”. (you can see a video of the talk here). His writing has won the Miles Franklin Literary Award, Victorian Premier’s Literary Award, Commonwealth Writers Prize, and Western Australian Premier’s Book Award among other honours. Last night he described the way in which his work has been intertwined with a rediscovery of the rythms and meanings of his ancestral language, Nyungar, from Albany in Western Australia. He works with the Wirlomin Noongar Language and Stories Project to, as he put it, ‘creep up on an endangered language’ through community meetings, creating artwork, and visits to country.

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Endangered linguistics in Australia?

Alongside endangered languages and cultures it is starting to look like Australia may also have endangered linguists and linguistics. According to press reports (see also here) La Trobe University in Victoria, Australia, plans to stop teaching linguistics at the undergraduate level, resulting in 4 staff positions being what the consultation document calls “surplus to our … Read more

Book launch: Kaytetye Dictionary

At the Aboriginal Languages Workshop at North Stradbroke Island last month, as usual there were things to celebrate. I had the honour of helping launch the Kaytetye Dictionary*. Book launches are a lovely way of thinking about and celebrating people’s work and ideas. Here’s what I said, more or less. Things I love about this … Read more