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Vacancies in this network: Translators, Revisers, Editors, etc.
Miami-Dade’s schools chief felt the push back and heard questions from skeptical media, then wisely postponed scheduled changes to the way the district teaches foreign languages, especially Spanish, to its students. He said that the district will fine-tune the curriculum first. Good move.
“This summer we’ll create a task force made up of educators, parents and stakeholders to help us come up with the best way to teach Spanish in the 21st century in a community going through a generational change,” Superintendent Alberto Carvalho told the Herald Editorial Board on Wednesday.
For now, Mr. Carvalho told the Board, he’s tabling expansion of recent changes and said he will keep the existing style of teaching Spanish in place, welcome news to those who rightly found fault with his plans to improve Spanish learning by making it more intensive, but unavailable to all.
“This has never been about getting rid of bilingualism; it’s about improving the way we teach Spanish. The old way is not working and parents let us know,” said Mr. Carvalho. He says he understands the value of bilingualism in a global economy. The district, he says, spends $20 million a year providing world languages to students.
In calling for a time-out to gather more input, Mr. Carvalho put the best interests of the students first. He said the district’s goal has been to improve the effectiveness of the Spanish instruction it now offers.
The changes began to take form three years ago, prompted by parents’ demand for a truly bilingual education for their kids. MDCPS began exploring ways to overhaul how it teaches students a second language.
The district decided to phase out traditional, 30-minute-a-day Spanish classes.
But the new approach prompted outcry from some who called the change “elitist.” They include some parents, yes, but also an association of Spanish teachers, the NAACP, the League of United Latin American Citizens, among them. They opposed the district’s plan to create the “extended foreign language” curriculum, a more-intensive program that would immerse students — make that some students — into Spanish.
However, those students who are not capable of keeping up in the more-rigorous program — though they would be able to learn something more than the basics — would get nothing, nada.
And there were other challenges with the new plan. Many Spanish-language teachers said that they would be forced to conduct classes in Spanish in math or others subjects in which they are not certified to teach.
Among the critics were NAACP leaders who know the value of speaking a foreign language and want to ensure that African-American and other minority students do not get shut out. And also Rosa Castro Feinberg, who, in 1988, was the first Hispanic woman elected to the Miami-Dade School Board. She told the board that she opposed the idea that all students would not receive any bilingual instruction unless they’re in the intensive program. She called the proposed plan “exclusionary” and “elitist.”
“It will have tons of economic ramifications,” she said. No one, least of all the students, can afford that.
Mr. Carvalho listened to the community’s concerns and acted. He’s right to give the proposed bilingual-education makeover more scrutiny before it’s implemented. The goal, after all, is to ensure students are served, not shortchanged.
Researchers looking at setting up an Aboriginal language Wikipedia say the site will have to change if it is to accommodate cultural differences.
Nyungar man and University of Sydney lecturer Clint Bracknell is one of a group of academics, along with others from the University of Western Australia and Curtin University tackling how to create a Wikipedia version in the language of his people.
If successful, it will become the first Wikipedia in an Indigenous Australian language.
The site is now accessible in 288 languages. Proposals for other language versions must meet certain criteria, including “a sufficient number of living native speakers to form a viable community and audience”.
Its founder, Jimmy Wales, once described Wikipedia as an attempt to “create and distribute a free encyclopedia of the highest possible quality to every single person on the planet in their own language”.
Although Wikipedia had been “supportive”, Bracknell said there were several hurdles to be overcome: “Any language that’s not predominantly written is going to require greater flexibility in terms of uploading audio and video.”
The top-down, authoritative writing style of the site also posed issues for Nyungar culture, Bracknell said, when their knowledge was so closely tied to country, family and other relationships. “Just having knowledge in text form and online, divorced from those connections, is a bit strange,” he said.
A “Nyungarpedia” would not be a direct translation of the English-version Wikipedia and could be as simple as a word list with pictures, with linked entries. A page about “yonga”, the Nyungar word for kangaroo, could then have “a story about yonga, an entry about yonga meat, and an another about hunting, for example, with audio and visuals”.
Bracknell said the legitimacy of oral accounts by community elders would have to be given greater recognition. “Wikipedia comes out of a European tradition in which a book is a significant source,” he said. “Whereas we have [journalist] Daisy Bates who has written all sorts of things in books about Aboriginal people that aren’t true.”
The Nyungar language is spoken at home by 369 people in Australia, according to the 2011 Australian Bureau of Statistics, a rise from 240 people in 2006. Their ancestral lands are in south-west Western Australia.
Despite the challenges, Bracknell said the internet posed a huge potential for maintaining the health of Aboriginal languages and other minority languages.
By connecting language users across vast distances – “a Nyungar-speaking student could be living in France and still interact with Nyungar people back at home, or cousins working elsewhere” – and prevent a language from going out of use, he said.
Have you ever thought about the word "do"? My advice is don't.
The word "do" is one of the bugbears of English that make our language incredibly difficult to master — for nonnative speakers and even for people born into the English-speaking world. Almost no one fully understands "do." The people who use it correctly do so through osmosis, not understanding.
To see what I mean, consider the formula for making questions in Latin-based languages like French. In other languages, to make a question, you often just take a statement and swap the places of the subject and verb. "Vous voulez fromage" (You want cheese) becomes a question when you switch the positions of the pronoun and the verb: "Voulez-vous fromage?" Simple.
There are exceptions, of course — situations trickier than this. But this is the basic formula. It's called inversion, because you invert the position of the subject and verb.
Try that in English. "You want cheese." "Want you cheese?" "He saw a great movie last weekend." "Saw he a great movie last weekend?" As we'll see in a minute, sometimes this process actually works in English.
But not in these examples. Examine all these questions and you can see that something is missing — a little-understood word known as a dummy operator. It's the word "do," and it's how we form questions like "Do you want cheese?" and "Did he see a great movie last weekend?"
"Do" has two main jobs. First, it's a regular old verb. "Do the dishes." "I don't do windows." "I do." In that job, it works the same as any other garden variety verb. But on top of that, it has a special job — that of dummy operator.
In grammar, an operator is an auxiliary verb that gets moved around to form questions and do a few other special jobs. It's part of a broader group called auxiliary verbs that work as helpers with other verbs.
English has a number of auxiliaries; "have" and "be" are the regular ones. We see them in sentences like "I have walked" and "I am walking." There are also modal auxiliaries like "can" and "must," as in "I can have dessert" and "He must leave."
These auxiliaries are operators, which means they can move around to do things like form questions: "Have I walked?" "Am I walking?" "Can I have dessert?" "Must he leave?"
Notice that when your sentence has an auxiliary verb, an inversion process like the one used in so many other languages works in English too. "I can leave." "Can I leave?" The problem is that not all English sentences have auxiliary verbs. "I walk." "Alex quit." "Ruby knows."
So to make these into questions, we call in a specialist — the dummy operator "do." "Do I walk?" "Did Alex quit?" "Does Ruby know?"
Here's how the Oxford English Grammar explains it: "Auxiliary 'do' is a dummy operator, since it functions as an operator in the absence of any other auxiliary when an operator is required to form questions, to make the sentence negative, or to form an abbreviated clause, as in 'My sister likes them, and I do too."
To me, the word "dummy" emphasizes how "do" doesn't have any meaning — not in these sentences, anyway. Modal auxiliaries like "can" tell us something about possibility. Basic auxiliaries like "have" change a verb's tense, telling us when something happened.
Auxiliary "do" doesn't. Like a dummy in a store window, it has no substance of its own. It's just there to help you arrange the things that actually matter.
JUNE CASAGRANDE is the author of "The Best Punctuation Book, Period." She can be reached at JuneTCN@aol.com.
Today social organizations, schools, and news portals, among others, are celebrating National Native Language Day in creative forms in Peru.
Perú21 features Yessica Sánchez, born into an Ashaninka community. (Photo: Perú21)
First Bilingual Awajún Civil Registry launches today
Run, run, as fast as you can
The rescue of a language: Speaking Jaqaru in Tupe
Throughout Peru today, a day of recognition for native languages is pervading everyday routines. Such as the homepage of local news portal, Perú21, who slyly changed headlines into the native tongue, Quechua.
Approximately 7.9 million native speakers of Quechua remain in South America in Peru, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Chile, and Argentina. The language is spoken in more than 10 dialects across the continent that are categorized in four different branches. Despite this large population of native speakers, Quechua, similar to a large number of native languages are under threat of extinction.
Ethnologue, an active research project for the last 50 years, has recorded 104 languages in Peru. Of these 93 are living and 11 are extinct; of the living languages, 15 are dying.
As speakers of English, and Spanish, and other widely spoken languages, it is hard to imagine the significance of losing one’s native language. Therefore to promote the beauty of native language and the preservation of national native languages, Peru celebrates Native Language Day today.
News agency Perú21 has put together an entire day of features, homepage variations including multiple native languages, and informative, fun videos to promote and give life to the variety of native languages spoken in Peru.
Click HERE to see special features with native speakers of Quechua, Aymara, Shipibo, Awajún, and Ashaninka from Perú21’s series entitled, #Todaslasvoces.
This article was brought to you by Inca Rail, a rail company loyal to sustainable tourism and quality service. Inca Rail is one of the founding members of TursimoCuida, an organization devoted to preserving Peru’s heritage by way of innovative projects.
TAGS: native language day, hillary ojeda
A bilingual newspaper in West Quebec says it's being ordered to segregate its English and French sections, a charge the Office Québecois de la langue Francaise denies. The Pontiac Journal was issued an injunction to comply with the province's language law or face a fine. It is a hot-button issue for both the French and English in Quebec and one that has the tiny bi- weekly paper sandwiched in between.
Putting a newspaper together is no easy feat; add to that Quebec's complicated language laws and a small paper like the Pontiac Journal can run into trouble.
‘This is the latest edition of the Pontiac Journal,’ says the paper’s publisher Lily Ryan, ‘and it complies with the law.’
Jean-Pierre Le Blanc with L'OQLF
Ryan says the first order from Quebec's Office Québecois de la langue francaise (L’OQLF) came in 2012, telling the newspaper to comply with the province’s law that dictates how French and English advertisements and articles are placed in the paper. Under section 58 of the French Language charter, commercial advertisements must be in French. They can be in another language, providing French is the predominant language. The L’OQLF adds that an English paper can have English-only ads but if a paper publishes in both languages, advertisements must be in French only or bilingual. A business can also decide to create distinct linguistic sections. The paper thought it had complied with that last article by having various English and French “sections” throughout the paper. But last month, Ryan says they were ordered to segregate the English and French sections in their entirety or face a hefty fine, up to $20,000.
‘That threat was significant,’ says Ryan, ‘so we ripped apart the paper and put it back together again with the concept of separating out the languages.’
The paper then published its own story on the issue and support in this largely bilingual community poured in.
‘I think we have to mature in this country and stop having that problem with English and French,’ says Habib Karnouk who reads the Pontiac Journal.
Doug Arthurs adds, ‘It's been going on for years and a lot of people are sick of it.’
‘The language police, I think, should be disbanded,’ concludes John Berrigan.
The L’OQLF denies it ordered the publisher to segregate its paper but says the law on advertising is clear.
‘The law is there, it is not the office who made the law,’ says Jean-Pierre Le Blanc with L’OQLF, ‘the office is there to apply it and we try to do it the best way and in a way to cause less problem.’
Lily Ryan says the newspaper's motto is "unifying the Pontiac". She says the decision of the Office of the Language Francaise is trying to undue that.
‘Nobody separates the languages in restaurants,’ she says, ‘Nobody separates the languages in the bedroom. Why are we doing this with the newspapers? We are reflecting back to the community what the community lives.’
Ryan says re-working the paper has been costly and time-consuming. She says they have no choice but to comply or face the consequences.
Turvey & Pettorelli  present a fascinating study exploring links between biological and linguistic diversity across New Guinea. With the world's highest linguistic diversity (around 900 languages, an average of one language per 1000 km2 ), as well as the high biodiversity characteristic of a large mountainous tropical island, New Guinea is an ideal test case for investigating patterns and drivers of biocultural diversity. Turvey & Pettorelli's finding that numbers of languages and mammal species are correlated across grid cells in New Guinea is consistent with studies in other parts of the world showing similar relationships (e.g. ). Globally, languages, like species, show a latitudinal diversity gradient , and areas of high language diversity often coincide with hotspots of species diversity . In addition, Turvey & Pettorelli report a surprising negative correlation between the numbers of threatened mammal species and languages considered at risk of extinction. This finding contrasts with previous studies showing that extinction risk in languages and species are positively correlated [5,6].
Turvey & Pettorelli's study is an important contribution to our understanding of the distribution of biocultural diversity, with potential practical implications for conservation. If the spatial distributions of threatened species and threatened languages correspond, then an integrated biocultural management strategy may be possible . On the other hand, such strategies may be less effective if there is a lack of congruence in spatial patterns of diversity. Spatial congruence between total language and mammal diversity could also indicate a functional connection between the two, either a direct causal link, or an indirect link via a third factor that influences both language and species diversity independently. For example, both types of diversity may be enhanced by the same environmental factors  if geographical barriers such as mountain ranges, rivers or sea inlets impede gene flow in species as well as human communication [2,8], promoting divergence in both cases. Alternatively, human cultural groups may diversify in response to the diversity of local environments [9,10]. Similarly, spatial congruence in vulnerability to extinction of languages and species may suggest that threatening processes are similar for both human cultures and biodiversity. But Turvey & Pettorelli's negative correlation implies the factors that increase extinction risk in languages are different to those for mammal species.
Statistical tests of association, such as correlations and regressions, are used to detect relationships between variables that are unlikely to arise from random variation, thus implying a functional relationship between the variables. But these tests rely on an assumption of statistical independence between data points. In this case, each grid cell is considered to represent an independent instance of the relationship between language and species diversity. However, this assumption of independence of observations is invalid if either or both forms of diversity are spatially autocorrelated. In fact, it is likely that both language and mammal richness are spatially autocorrelated, because many of the species or languages that occur in a particular grid cell will also occur in neighbouring cells. This means that similarity in richness values for different grid cells is at least partly predictable from their spatial proximity alone, which can elevate type 1 errors (false positives) in statistical tests of association, including correlation, regression or other linear models .
Furthermore, Turvey & Pettorelli's correlations included coastal grid cells with as little as 25% land area. Because richness increases with area, a grid cell with only 25% land area may have unusually low levels of both species and language richness, which could contribute to a spurious positive association. This is important to investigate, because Turvey & Pettorelli's results could be driven by grid cells containing few languages and low species diversity, with no significant relationship between diversity and risk in grid cells of medium to high language and species diversity.
Here, we investigate whether the spatial associations between mammal richness, language richness and elevation reported by Turvey & Pettorelli are robust to these two potential artefacts. We obtained geographical distributions of mammal species from the Global Mammal Assessment (www.iucn.org) and distributions of the world's languages from the Ethnologue . We extracted all distributions that overlap with the mainland of New Guinea (217 mammal species, 898 languages). We then created a raster grid for New Guinea at a resolution of 0.5° (approx. 50 × 50 km) and calculated the total number of mammal species and languages, and the number of threatened mammal species and languages, within each grid cell. Threatened mammal species and threatened languages were defined using the same criteria as Turvey & Pettorelli . We also calculated mean elevation for each grid cell, using data from the STRM 90 m Digital Elevation Database.
To analyse spatial congruence patterns, we first fitted simple Pearson correlations among log-transformed richness and elevation values, across grid cells, to compare with the results of Turvey & Pettorelli . We then fitted a linear model that predicts log(language richness) from log(mammal richness) and tested for spatial autocorrelation in the model residuals, using Moran's I. This test indicated significant spatial structure in the residuals (Moran's I = 0.05, p < 0.0001), necessitating the use of methods that account for spatial autocorrelation to test for associations between variables. We performed two kinds of test. First, for direct comparability with the Pearson correlations used by Turvey & Pettorelli, we performed correlations with significance tested using Dutilleul's modified t-test, which uses an effective sample size computed from the spatial covariance matrix . Second, we explored multivariate models using simultaneous autoregressive (SAR) error models . We chose this method over other kinds of SAR models because its underlying assumption that spatial autocorrelation exists in both predictor and response variables seemed most appropriate for these data. Moran's I tests on model residuals confirmed that this method adequately removed the effects of spatial autocorrelation. We used SAR models to test for univariate associations between language and mammal richness, threatened language and threatened mammal richness, and between mean elevation and each richness variable. We then fitted multivariate models predicting language richness from mammal richness, mean elevation and the proportion of land area per grid cell; and threatened language richness from threatened mammal richness, mean elevation and proportion of land area. All geographic information system (GIS) procedures were done using functions in the R packages ‘sp’, ‘rgdal’, ‘rgeos’, ‘raster’, ‘fossil’ and ‘worldmap’. Dutilleul's modified t-tests were implemented in the ‘SpatialPack’ package, and SAR models in the ‘spdep’ package.
When we assume independence of observations by using Pearson correlations, we obtain similar results to Turvey & Pettorelli. Mean language richness across the 256 grid cells is 5.96 (range: 0–43, s.d. 5.22), mean mammal species richness is 36.12 (2–103, 28.15), and there is a significantly positive correlation between number of species and languages (r = 0.4, p < 0.0001), and a significant negative correlation between number of threatened species and threatened languages (r = −0.16, p = 0.01). But when we correct for the non-independence between grid cells due to spatial autocorrelation using Dutilleul's modified t-test, there are no significant correlations between language diversity and mammal species richness (r = 0.24, p = 0.22), or between number of threatened languages and threatened species (r = −0.13, p = 0.24). The same results emerge from the SAR models: there are no significant associations between language richness and mammal richness, elevation or land area per grid cell (table 1). The only significant correlate of number of threatened languages per grid cell is elevation, which remains significant when accounting for mammal species richness and land area in a multivariate model. The SAR models all provide a better fit to the data than the corresponding non-spatial regression, when compared using Akaike's information criterion (AIC) (table 1).
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Spatial autoregressive (SAR) error models for (a) log(language richness) and (b) log(threatened language richness). Results are shown for two univariate models (mammal richness and mean elevation), and one multivariate model (mammal richness + mean elevation + % land cover per grid cell). For each model, the Akaike information criterion (AIC) for the SAR model and the corresponding non-spatial ordinary least squares (OLS) regression model are given. Asterisk (*) indicates the models that provide a statistically significant fit to the data.
Turvey & Pettorelli's negative relationship between threatened languages and threatened mammal species is largely a result of their different elevational distributions—threatened language diversity is highest on lowlands of the north coast, and threatened mammal diversity is highest in the elevated central regions. Because a standard correlation assumes grid cells are statistically independent, it essentially samples this one distinct difference multiple times, resulting in pseudoreplication and elevating type 1 statistical error. When spatial autocorrelation is taken into account, the negative relationship between species and language threat disappears.
Globally, language and species diversity may show consistent trends (e.g. increasing towards the equator) but within smaller regions, local factors may operate to create finer scale patterns (e.g. mammal diversity is greater at higher elevations, while language diversity is strongly shaped by prehistoric settlement along coastal regions). Studies such as Turvey & Pettorelli's which focus on a particular region are an important addition to global-scale analyses. However, at all scales of analysis, it is critical to test whether the fundamental assumptions of the statistical analysis are met. If spatial autocorrelation is detected in the data, then appropriate methods that allow for the resulting non-independence must be used.
The accompanying reply can be viewed at http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.1098/rspb.2015.0591.
© 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.
↵Turvey ST, Pettorelli N. 2014 Spatial congruence in language and species richness but not threat in the world's top linguistic hotspot. Proc. R. Soc. B 281, 20141644. (doi:10.1098/rspb.2014.1644)Abstract/FREE Full Text
↵Foley WA. 2000 The languages of New Guinea. Annu. Rev. Anthropol. 29, 357–404. (doi:10.1146/annurev.anthro.29.1.357)CrossRef
↵Moore JL, Manne L, Brooks T, Burgess ND, Davies R, Rahbek C, Williams P, Balmford A. 2002 The distribution of cultural and biological diversity in Africa. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B 269, 1645–1653. (doi:10.1098/rspb.2002.2075)Abstract/FREE Full Text
↵Mace R, Pagel M. 1995 A latitudinal gradient in the density of human languages in North America. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B 261, 117–121. (doi:10.1098/rspb.1995.0125)Abstract/FREE Full Text
↵Gorenflo LJ, Romaine S, Mittermeier RA, Walker-Painemilla K. 2012 Co-occurrence of linguistic and biological diversity in biodiversity hotspots and high biodiversity wilderness areas. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 109, 8032–8037. (doi:10.1073/pnas.1117511109)Abstract/FREE Full Text
↵Amano T, Sandel B, Eager H, Bulteau E, Svenning J-C, Dalsgaard B, Rahbek C, Davies RG, Sutherland WJ. 2014 Global distribution and drivers of language extinction risk. Proc. R. Soc. B 281, 20141574. (doi:10.1098/rspb.2014.1574)Abstract/FREE Full Text
↵Nettle D. 1998 Explaining global patterns of language diversity. J. Anthropol. Archaeol. 17, 354–374. (doi:10.1006/jaar.1998.0328)CrossRefWeb of Science
↵Axelsen JB, Manrubia S. 2014 River density and landscape roughness are universal determinants of linguistic diversity. Proc. R. Soc. B 281, 20133029. (doi:10.1098/rspb.2013.3029)Abstract/FREE Full Text
↵Harmon D. 1996 Losing species, losing languages: connections between biological and linguistic diversity. Southwest J. Linguist. 15, 89–108.
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From VOA Learning English, this is the Health and Lifestyle report.
Have you ever found yourself in this situation: You hear a song you used to sing when you were a child – a bit of nostalgia or “blast from the past,” as we say.
But it is not a distant childhood memory. The words come back to you as clearly as when you sang them all those years ago. Here is an example:
I had not heard this song in years. But when a deejay played it recently at a children’s birthday party, I sang it word for word.
“A noun’s a special kind of word. It’s any name you’ve ever heard. I find it quite interesting – a noun’s a person, place or thing.”
This is the Schoolhouse Rock song that taught me what nouns are and I never forgot it.
It seems there is a scientific reason for this.
Researchers at the University of Edinburgh studied the relationship between music and remembering a foreign language. They found that remembering words in a song was the best way to remember even one of the most difficult languages.
The Hungarian experiment
Here is what they did.
Researchers took 60 adults and randomly split them into three groups of 20. Then they gave the groups three different types of “listen-and-repeat” learning conditions.
Researchers had one group simply speak the words. They had the second group speak the words to a rhythm, or beat. And they asked the third group to sing the words.
All three groups studied words from the Hungarian language for 15 minutes. Then they took part in a series of language tests to see what they remembered.
Why Hungarian, you ask? Researchers said they chose Hungarian because not many people know the language. It does not share any roots with Germanic or Romance languages, such as Italian or Spanish.
After the tests were over, the singers came out on top.
The people who learned these new Hungarian words by singing them showed a higher overall performance. They did the best in four out of five of the tests. They also performed two times better than those who simply learned the words by speaking them.
Dr. Katie Overy supervised the study at the university’s Reid School of Music. She says singing could lead to new ways to learning a foreign language. The brain, it seems, likes to remember things when they are contained in a catchy, or memorable, tune.
Dr. Overy worked with Dr. Karen Ludke and Professor Fernanda Ferreira on this study. Their findings are published in the journal Memory and Cognition.
Dr. Ludke said the findings could help those who struggle to learn foreign languages. On the University of Edinburgh’s website Dr. Ludke writes, “This study provides the first experimental evidence that a listen-and-repeat singing method can support foreign language learning, and opens the door for future research in this area.”
Language teachers know using music works
Language teachers already know the value of using music and singing.
A teacher at a Chinese language school in Washington, D.C. relies heavily on songs and chants to teach Chinese. Hua Zhu Ying teaches students who most likely have never spoken Chinese before coming to the school. Ms. Hua says she uses music all the time to teach children Chinese.
“For example, for little kids usually we will use English songs but we are teaching them the Chinese lyrics. So it’s easy for them to start because they know the music. They just need to translate into Chinese words. ”
She adds that not only does it work, but it is fun for the kids.
“So, I think they are really having fun learning Chinese songs using English music. Sometimes, I think if I were taught English like that way maybe I would speak much better English than now.”
I’m Anna Matteo.
Do you use songs to learn or teach English? Is there a song from your childhood that you remember to this day? Let us know in the comments section.
Anna Matteo wrote this story for Learning English. Anne Ball was the editor.
A NATIONAL school curriculum for Aboriginal languages and Torres Strait Islander languages is expected soon.
University of Sydney's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander director Jakelin Troy said 13 of Australia's 250 indigenous languages were spoken across all generations, but more than 100 were at risk of dying.
The curriculum's key writer said indigenous languages needed to be encouraged for everyday use, especially at school.
"If you don't support local languages you are engaging in further dissimilation and erosion of identification, often leading to serious social issues," Professor Troy said.
An Australian Council for Educational Research study in 2008 found 260 Australian schools were involved in an indigenous language program. and more than 80 different indigenous languages were taught. - APN NEWSDESK
The Académie Française, the exclusive and ancient institution tasked with safeguarding the French language, will welcome both its first Haitian and first Québécois member on Thursday in the form of novelist Dany Laferrière.
Born in Port-au-Prince, Haïti, in 1953, Laferrière moved to Canada in 1976 where he worked as a journalist before publishing his first novel, How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired, in 1985.
Laferrière, who has since authored close to 20 novels, was elected to Académie Française in December 2013 but will formally take up his seat at an inauguration ceremony at the institution’s Paris headquarters with the typical pomp.
In a nod to his roots, he will wear a suit by Montreal designer Jean-Claude Poitras, with a collar meant to resemble that worn by Haitian revolution leader Toussaint L’Ouverture.
On Tuesday, he was presented with his ceremonial sword, given to all new Académie members other than clergy, which was created by Haitian sculptor Patrick Vilaire.
Afterwards, Laferrière will officially become one of the “immortals”, the informal name given to the 40 members of the Académie Française, who are elected to the institution for life.
Founded by Cardinal Richelieu, the chief minister to King Louis XIII, in 1635 the institution defines its role as “to give sure and certain rules to our language” and to ensure it is kept “pure” and “eloquent”.
But over the years, it has often been the subject of ridicule both at home and abroad for its stubborn resistance to the use of English loanwords by French speakers.
FRANCE 24 MEETS DANY LAFERRIÈRE IN MONTREAL
In recent years it has, for example, dictated that the French should say “logiciel”, instead of “software”, “Courriel” instead of email and “mot-dièse” rather than “hashtag”.
This struggle against anglicisms has often been in vain, particularly among French youth and within the business world, where words borrowed from English are common.
‘Language is for everyone’
However, the election of a member with roots in both Haiti and Quebec – both francophone regions but where the influence of foreign languages is more heavily felt and accepted – is the latest sign that the Académie may be starting to take a more flexible, pragmatic approach to its functions.
In March this year, French Culture Minister Fleur Pellerin praised the contribution foreign words had made to the French language.
“Some languages – like English today, or Italian in the past – have been particularly generous in offering hundreds of new words to French,” she said at an event launching the annual French Language and Francophonie Week.
“The French language is not frozen. A language is always evolving,” she added.
Her words were welcomed by a number of linguists present, among them Laferrière himself.
“A language needs to live first of all, otherwise it’s all just ideology,” he said at the time.
Last year the Académie welcomed its first ever British member – poet and literary scholar Sir Michael Edwards.
Inducting a foreign national is nothing new for the Académie – current members include the Franco-Lebanese author Amin Maalouf and the Algerian novelist and filmmaker Assia Djebar.
But the decision to elect Edwards – a native speaker of the language the defenders of French fear most – was seen as a watershed moment.
Meanwhile, in an interview on French radio earlier this week, Laferrière insisted he would not act as a “defender of a language, a region or a way of being”, in his new role as an “immortal”.
“Language is for everyone,” he said.
(FRANCE 24 with AFP)
Macmillan Swaziland has partnered with the Swaziland Broadcasting and Information Services (SBIS) in the quest to improve the use of SiSwati by the radio station by presenting them with books worth over E20 000.
Macmillan Managing Director Busi Simelane said the station was involved in the education of the nation through information dissemination and the proper use of the language which would preserve and develop its use within the nation for future generations.
“The radio station has its own type of education and the books we are giving will complement this by enhancing the way the language will be used,” Simelane said.
The books presented to the station comprised of 20 English - SiSwati dictionaries as well as novels which will be stocked in the station’s library.
Simelane admitted that she at times cringed at the words used by announcers but came to understand that this was due to the different ways of growing up and exposure to use of the language.
“We want to play a role in improving our indigenous language and don’t want to appear judgemental without giving a helping hand in order to mitigate the situation,” the managing director said while noting that the role of radio in the education sector was huge hence she committed to a lifelong relationship as long as their mission remained similar, to improve SiSwati.
She said the dictionary was created in order to preserve the language and its appropriate use.
Receiving the donation, SBIS Director Martin Dlamini said they were grateful for the assistance in preserving the SiSwati language.
The director said the day signified an important development as the ministry of information communication and technology under which the station operated was involved with ensuring that information was disseminated the country over.
“The station has a long history on giving the country information to the point that government once had a programme whereby radios were given to pupils in order to improve on the subjects they learnt,” the director said adding that even though the first group of pupils to write SiSwati in the school leaving certificate, the country had come of age in the use of its indigenous language.
“UNESCO reminds us that a nation that has lost its language is already dead,” Dlamini said.
He said the station’s website as well as government should have a SiSwati page in order to grow the language from what it currently was.
He revealed that he came from a family which strove to preserve the language as his mother taught Geography and Zulu which was used in times past instead of SiSwati and she was also an author of Siswati books such as Lifa and Siswati Sami.
We represent each language within black borders and then provide the numbers of native speakers (in millions) by country. The colour of these countries shows how languages have taken root in many different regions
TEHRAN – A five-volume English-Persian dictionary compiled by scholar Bahaeddin Khorramshahi has recently been published by the three Iranian publishers Moin, Negah and Shabahang.
The dictionary named “Kara” containing over 15,000 words was introduced during a ceremony held at the Arasbaran Cultural Center on Monday, the Persian service of IRNA reported.
Speaking at the ceremony, Khorramshahi stated that dictionaries are recognized as the first modern phenomenon in the literary and cultural categories.
“The basis of compiling a dictionary is methodology and then collecting sources and later compiling,” Khorramshahi added.
He said that compiling a dictionary is not merely the translation of foreign dictionaries, it requires constant research.
“You need to carry out research to find and compare the meaning of words from a number of sources, it is not simply a matter of picking a foreign dictionary and translating it into another language,” he explained.
Kara is considered to be the most comprehensive dictionary published over the past 200 years.
Scholar Nasrollah Purjavadi, also attending the ceremony, said that one of the best activities established after the Islamic Revolution was to compile reference books.
“The Persian language is a huge treasure and we have not yet achieved what we anticipated,” he added.
Photo: Lexicographer Bahaeddin Khorramshahi (4th from left) and a number of literati attend the unveiling ceremony of Kara English-Persian Dictionary at Tehran’s Arasbaran Cultural Center on May 25, 2015.(Honaronline/Arezu Bayat)
QUEEN’S ROAD: A man who started buying dictionaries to learn English has just come out with a three-volume Kannada-English dictionary.
At its launch earlier this month, lexicography stalwart G Venkatasubbaiah described V Krishna’s dictionary, with about 1.6 lakh words, as more exhaustive than Rev Kittel’s.
Kittel’s work, published in 1894, is the definitive Kannada dictionary. Krishna’s 4,750-page dictionary is priced at Rs 3,000, and is published by the Karnataka Sahitya Parishat, headed by Dr C Veeranna.
Krishna, now in his sixties, first picked up a dictionary when he began working at the India Agricultural Research Institute’s Soil Correlation Centre in Hebbal in 1971.
“Coming from a village in Mysuru district, I wasn’t very comfortable with English,” he says. “And this was a Central government department, and almost everything was in English. So a senior officer suggested I keep a dictionary.”
As he added more and more dictionaries to his shelf — he has built up a collection of about 300 dictionaries and lexicography-related books over the years — he started thinking of a dictionary he would compile for his personal use.
“When I came across Webster’s New World Dictionary, I thought that a Kannada dictionary in that format and with that level of detail would be great,” he says. So what began as a concise dictionary became a larger project spanning 30 years. He balanced this with his day job in various government and private organisations, and also completed his graduation in commerce in an evening college.
Krishna initially took down all the words by hand. But the advent of technology aided him along, after he gained access to a computer in 1999. “In 2004, I installed Nudi, and it became easier still,” he adds. The software enables writing in Kannada.
Apart from Webster, he names Random House’s and Chambers’ 20th century dictionaries, Kannada Sahitya Parishat’s eight-volume Kannada-Kannada series, V S Apte’s and Monier Williams’ Sanskrit-English dictionaries, Madras University’s Tamil-English dictionary, Brown’s Telugu-English dictionary and a couple of Hindi ones as the dictionaries he referred to.
“I haven’t left out any Kannada word that has come to my notice, whether or not commonly used, or English words that are in common usage in Kannada,” he says. So words like ‘bus’ and ‘school’ have found their way into his compilation. “But that doesn’t mean that I’ve excluded shaale because that’s in usage too,” he says.
Of tech-related words, he says very often, it’s easier to use the English ones rather than coin Kannada equivalents.
Karnataka Sahitya Parishat, the publisher, is astounded by the response it has received.
For details, contact 94481 19060
BARRE — You are expected to do two things when you enter Alicia Frost’s class: Keep your mouth closed and keep your hands moving.
For the past three years, Quabbin Regional High School has been offering American Sign Language as part of its foreign language curriculum, along with French, Spanish and Chinese.
The language of deaf people in the United States, American Sign Language is a linguistically complete, natural language that has its own grammatical rules and syntax, similar to other spoken languages. According to the Modern Language Association, American Sign Language is the fourth most widely used language in the United States.
And now it's becoming popular in high school.
Mrs. Frost — who originally studied at Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, to become a high school English teacher — has been teaching ASL for six years.
Before coming to Quabbin, the Mineola, New York, native taught ASL in the North Middlesex Regional School District. Before she became an ASL teacher, Mrs. Frost worked at Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults in Sands Point, New York, where she learned sign language on the job.
Mrs. Frost said the best way to learn ASL is by interacting with deaf people and, to be any good in sign language, you have to get acclimated to different people who are signing.
“You've got to understand that ASL, like with any language, you have to go find different dialects and different regions,” Mrs. Frost said. “People sign different ways. Some people are very nice and fluent signers and clear. And other people are really lousy signers. Even deaf people aren’t always very smooth. There are going to be different signs for different things in different areas (of the U.S.). Overall, usually, it’s the same general language, and you can adapt.”
Mrs. Frost said she doesn’t know of many schools in Central Massachusetts that offer American Sign Language. In the Worcester public school system, the sole school that offers ASL as a foreign language is Claremont Academy, according to Dolores M. Gribouski, a manager for the school system's Doherty and North quadrants.
At Quabbin, not only is American Sign Language being taught and accepted as part of the foreign language curriculum, ASL is also one of the more popular foreign language courses in the district.
And, it turns out, most of the students taking American Sign Language in the Quabbin Regional School District are not taking it because they have a family member or friend who is deaf or suffers from hearing loss. They are taking it because they feel it has a more usable component in everyday life and are attracted to the more hands-on and visual nature of the language, Mrs. Frost said.
“There is no written component of the language, so it makes it easier to learn in a lot of ways that they don’t have to write it,” Mrs. Frost said. “People are first drawn to it because they think it looks fun.”
During one of Ms. Frost’s ASL class, students have to talk with their hands, not their mouths.
While Spanish is the most popular foreign language offered at Quabbin, ASL I students Ryan Malkowski, Olivia Amato-Hansen and Travis Lanpher found American Sign Language much easier and more enjoyable to take than Spanish.
“I found it incredibly interesting how they can communicate without using their voice. It piqued my interest,” Travis said. “It’s not necessarily a difficult language. Spanish is like repetition every day, but ASL is more visual than physical learning. It’s kind of muscle memory.”
Others ASL students saw sign language as something that would help them later in life.
“ASL is really different, and it’s one of those beneficial languages that you don’t see very often,” ASL II student Carson Brooks said. “It’s easier to learn because you’re forced to not talk. The other classes, they can still speak English, so they can work their way through the language, whereas in here, if you don’t know a word, you have to know what the sign for it is in order to get your point across.”
Showing that learning American Sign Language can be fun, Mrs. Frost’s seven prized ASL students that she assembled on this day rattled off their favorite words in sign language (including monkey, whale, squirrel, soda, bacon, seizure and potato) and favorite pop hit to sign to (including Miley Cyrus’ “Party in the U.S.A.,” Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Owl City’s “Fireflies” and Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off”).
Mrs. Frost said American Sign Language makes students visual learners and one’s facial expression is the “No. 1 glamour point,” she said.
“You can see who knows the language well in class,” Mrs. Frost said. “They will have discussions about things with their friends, while the one who don’t (know the language) will sit there, looking miserable. It’s all visual. It’s more concepts. It’s not words.”
Australia has held its biggest storytime session of the year, with more than 450,000 children getting involved.
Across the country, children's book The Brothers Quibble was read to children in schools, public libraries, kindergartens and childcare centres at 11am.
The book - about two siblings learning to get along - was chosen for this year's National Simultaneous storytime event and had been translated into 17 different languages.
For the first time, the chosen book was translated into an Indigenous language - Woiwurrung.
The language was spoken by the Wurundjeri People from the Kulin Nation of central Victoria.
Mandy Nicholson, from the Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages, read to children at Preston Library today.
She said the event was important to remind the community of the area's Indigenous heritage.
"Unfortunately in Victoria, out of the 38 different languages, there's not fluent speakers of any of our different languages," she said. "So we're really at the forefront of creating and re-learning our language here in Melbourne and other parts here in Victoria as well...we're really trying to reawaken our language."
The National Simultaneous storytime event was in its 15th year.
It aim was to encourage more children to read.
Sue McKerracher, from the Australian Library and Information Association, said early exposure to books and stories could help with early literacy and self-esteem later in life.
"I think what a lot of us don't realise is that actually we need to be sharing books, rhymes, stories, with children from the age of nought onwards," she said.
"A lot of brain development happens from nought to three. And really you're giving your child the best chance in life if you can start reading to them really at an early age."
Ms Nicholson said indigenous language books could help boost low indigenous literacy rates.
She said telling local stories could help too.
"The storybooks that are in libraries and schools, they're not local stories; not local creation stories, so I think once children - Indigenous and non-Indigenous children - are reading books that are local to the area, then they can really relate to the local area more and be more close to the local cultural history of the area." she said.
The Brothers Quibble is available as an audio book in 16 different languages including Greek, Hindi and Arabic.
Translating children’s books was not easy and local references, informal language and rhymes could be challenging.
But Arabic translator Heba Kassoua said it was worth it to share Australian stories and give children a sense of belonging.
"It's nice to see that there are some shared stories as well across the cultures because kids in the Arab world would be like, 'Oh you know what...you know it's exactly what happened with me and my little brother', or, 'You know, it's the same all around the world,' and it's quite important in that sense." she said.
The Confucius Institute says a second language should be compulsory for all children, but Waitaki principals are backing the choice model.
Mandarin is the most spoken language in the world, by number of native speakers, followed by Spanish and then English. The percentage of the global population that grew up speaking English as its first language is also thought to be declining, while an increasing number of people now speak more than one language.
The Confucius Institute NZ, a Chinese Government funded language school, told TVNZ that about 80 per cent of our New Zealand children finish school without learning another language other than English, and that would put the next generation in an awkward position.
Waitaki Boys' High School (WBHS) rector Paul Jackson said although he did not agree a second language should be compulsory for secondary school students, he did feel it should at least be an option.
"I do agree that there should be provision at secondary level to teach foreign languages. Unfortunately there are very few students who wish to continue with language studies at WBHS," he said.
"I believe languages are best started and taught at early childhood and primary level as they are in most European countries such as Denmark, Sweden, Germany, France and many others.
"To learn a foreign language and to be able to communicate in a foreign language is a priceless gift that cannot be underestimated. Unfortunately it is difficult for our youth to come to terms with this when everything they see and read is in English.
"Unfortunately our youth very rarely experience foreign languages and they expect everyone to speak English."
He said WBHS currently offers Te Reo Maori and Mandarin and is preparing to introduce Tongan at NCEA level 1 next year.
"Presently all students experience Mandarin at year 9. Mandarin is then optional at year 10 and beyond. Te Reo is optional to all students from year 9 to year 13. Te Reo is a full day's study, one day a week and is linked to Kapa Haka."
Te Reo is the most popular language to study at WBHS with more than 30 pupils currently enrolled, Jackson said.
"Te Reo is very successful thanks to the enthusiasm of our local community and the commitment of the Waihoa Marae who supply the teachers."
St Kevin's College principal Paul Olsen said second languages are already part of school curriculum anyway.
"We are trying to build global citizens and we encourage them to learn the language of our local culture, Pasifika and Maori, and those countries we trade with.
The college offers new pupils a "taster" to languages on offer.
He said Maori and Mandarin are the most popular but pupils are encouraged to study any language they are interested in through correspondence.
"My view is that if somebody wants to learn a language we should support them," he said.
Waitaki Girls High School principal Tracy Walker also said the school has always offered pupils the opportunity to learn a second language.
The school currently offers classes in German, Japanese and Te Reo Maori, and pupils are also able to study a different language through correspondence.
Mandarin will be offered as starter course from July to both pupils and the community.
"We are very much a language school and we promote it," she said.
"All year 9 do a language rotation, like a taster, which also includes Korean. If they wish to they can choose to take it further. It is always a struggle to keep the momentum going."
Walker said there is currently one year 12 pupil studying Te Reo at NCEA level 2 and there have been others who have developed careers around language studies.
David Grosclaude http://www.david-grosclaude.com
Conseiller régional d’Aquitaine
Délégué aux langues régionales
email@example.com Le 27 mai 2015
Assez de mépris pour notre langue !
Les signes de mépris de la part de l’État pour notre langue se succèdent et se multiplient. Avec le dernier en date, l’accumulation me contraint à mener une action pour laquelle je sollicite votre soutien. C’est une action en faveur de la dignité de notre engagement pour la reconnaissance de la langue occitane.
Je m’installe, ce jour, dans le hall de l’Hôtel de Région à Bordeaux et j’y entame une grève de la faim. Je souhaite dénoncer l’absence de suites donnés par les services de l’État un projet voté par l’assemblée régionale d’Aquitaine et par l’assemblée régionale de Midi-Pyrénées en juin 2014.Cela fait bientôt un an !
Ce projet, afin de voir le jour officiellement, ne nécessite que la publication d’un décret au Journal Officiel. Il s’agit de la création de l’Office Public de la Langue Occitane (OPLO) sous la forme d’un Groupement d’Intérêt Public (GIP). Ce sera un organisme interrégional destiné à promouvoir une politique en faveur de la langue occitane, dans plusieurs domaines et résolument tourné vers le développement de la langue. Il s’agit de faire en sorte que le nombre de locuteurs cesse de baisser et qu’il augmente à terme. C’est pour cette raison qu’il est tourné en priorité vers les jeunes générations.
Que des délibérations de deux assemblées régionales soient traitées avec si peu de considération —pour ne pas dire avec du mépris— n’est pas acceptable. Cela ne fait que donner des arguments à tous ceux qui pensent que la politique consiste seulement à faire des promesses que l’on ne tient pas. Que diront-ils alors si les décisions votées ne sont pas mises en oeuvre ?
Quand deux régions décident de mener une politique commune pour promouvoir notre langue, dont on sait qu’elle est menacée, l’État est non seulement aux abonnés absents, mais il bloque. C’est aussi le cas sur d’autres dossiers concernant notre langue.
Ce blocage de l’État central lorsqu’il s’agit de traiter de la question des langues dites régionales est récurrent. Il existe des réticences à chaque fois que cette question des langues est mise en débat. N’est ce pas le cas aujourd’hui avec la réforme du collège ? Que deviendra l’enseignement de l’occitan et en occitan ? Les craintes sont grandes et justifiées de mon point de vue.
J’ai été sollicité en 2013 pour participer aux travaux d’une commission sur la pluralité linguistique, à l’initiative de la ministre de la Culture. Cette commission a auditionné des dizaines de personnes, a travaillé pendant plusieurs semaines, et a nécessité de très nombreuses réunions. Un rapport a été publié, contenant des propositions très concrètes et très facilement applicables ; il n’y a eu aucune suite. Quel gâchis !
Je tiens à souligner qu’en tant qu’élu délégué, j’ai travaillé au projet d’Office Public avec le soutien du président de la Région Aquitaine et avec l’aide entière des services et en parfaite entente avec mon collègue de Midi-Pyrénées.
Alors que le mandat des élus régionaux arrive à son terme j’estime avoir des comptes à rendre. J’assume mes responsabilités d’élu et chacun doit prendre les siennes.
Il existe un blocage et, de mon point de vue, du mépris. J’interpelle l’État et particulièrement ses services centraux. Il faut que cette situation cesse.
Vous connaissez mon engagement en faveur de la langue, je compte sur votre soutien.
Je vous remercie.
Les Français ayant immigré en Israël sont des Israéliens de France, des Français en Israël, les enfants sont scolarisés en hébreu et leurs parents parlent français à la maison… Un ‘’balagan’’ linguistique dans lequel cette population évolue pour son plus grand bonheur et qui offre à ses enfants un bilinguisme, avec ses atouts et ses difficultés.
Qu’est-ce que le bilinguisme?
Le bilinguisme est la capacité d’un individu à utiliser plus d’une langue régulièrement, dans des situations variées de la vie quotidienne. C’est la compétence d’établir des liens entre les différentes langues, voire de passer d’une langue à l’autre dans certaines situations de communication.
Les avantages du bilinguisme
Dès leur plus jeune âge, ces enfants comprennent la différence entre les deux langues et dans quelles situations les utiliser. Il leur arrive de faire rire leurs parents en mélangeant les deux langues dans une même phrase, mais globalement ils réussissent rapidement à passer d’une langue à l’autre.
Ce bilinguisme est un atout pour le cerveau et apporte à l’enfant une grande flexibilité mentale. Pour certains neuropsychologues ‘’le bilinguisme augmente les performances du système cognitif des fonctions exécutives’’ (étude du Professeur Ellen Bialystok de l’Université de York au Canada). En des termes plus simples, cela permet à l’enfant de développer l’attention, la sélection, l’inhibition, le changement, etc. C’est une sorte de chef d’orchestre du cerveau qui décide où allouer les ressources.
D’autre part, le fait d’être bilingue permet de passer plus facilement d’une information à une autre et d’être plus flexible pour changer son centre d’attention.
Selon l’équipe de psychologues de l’université Bar-Ilan, cette capacité pourrait ainsi expliquer la plus grande souplesse mentale des enfants bilingues et les avantages intellectuels sur tout le cerveau. ‘’La découverte la plus surprenante de ces dernières années a été de constater que le bilinguisme retardait significativement - de plus de cinq ans, en moyenne – l’apparition de la maladie d’Alzheimer’’, explique le Pr Bialystok. Comme si le cerveau gardait une certaine jeunesse grâce à la gymnastique mentale du changement de langue.
Les difficultés du bilinguisme
Cependant lors de l’acquisition des deux langues, les enfants ont parfois quelques difficultés. Contre toutes attentes, les enfants nés en Israël ou montés avant l’âge de 5 ans auront probablement des difficultés à développer correctement le français et non pas l’hébreu. Un enfant bilingue est rarement exposé aux deux langues de façon égale. Il y a ce qu’on appelle une langue majoritaire – pour nos enfants ce sera l’hébreu – et une langue minoritaire – la langue du foyer c’est-à-dire le français.
Par rapport aux enfants monolingues, les enfants franco-israéliens prennent parfois un peu de retard dans l’acquisition de certains éléments de langage et ont généralement un vocabulaire un peu faible pour leur âge. On entend aussi des déformations syntaxiques qui peuvent faire sourire comme “donne-moi passer, c’est le tour de moi, tu peux mitkarever”.
La solution est simple : il faut alors multiplier les occasions où l’enfant est exposé au français : privilégier des activités avec des français, faire avec l’enfant des exercices langagiers simples, regarder des dessins animés et lire des livres en français,…
Laure Fitouchi – Orthophoniste
Netanya – Tel Aviv
Dakar, 26 mai (APS) - L?ambassadeur de Turquie au Sénégal, Nilgün Erdem Ari, a fait état mardi de réflexions autour d?un projet de création d?un département de langues et littératures turques à l?Université Cheikh Anta Diop (UCAD).
''Le développement de nos relations sur le plan académique est tout aussi important. Cette relation entre les universités est aussi un des piliers du développement de notre coopération à travers l?échange des connaissances techniques notamment l?histoire la culture et les langues'', a t-elle dit à l?APS.
La venue, prochaine, d?un éminent professeur d?université turc à l?UCAD sera la première étape de cette réflexion selon la diplomate et ??va permettre de développer des relations académiques et l?ouverture aux étudiants sénégalais des universités turques??.
''D?ailleurs nous avons des bourses qui sont délivrées chaque année aux étudiants sénégalais?? a t-elle ajouté précisant qu?une délégation est actuellement au Sénégal pour les examens de sélections des futurs boursiers.
Entre 9 et 15 bourses seront délivrées cette année aux étudiants sénégalais, a t-elle fait savoir avant de soutenir que 90 étudiants sont actuellement dans les universités turques, dans le domaine des ingénieures, en économie ou encore en
Les chèques Langues
Le candidat que vous souhaitez engager a besoin d’un petit coup de pouce en langues ? Pensez aux chèques langues !
Les chèques langues permettent d’offrir une formation gratuite en néerlandais, anglais, allemand ou français à votre futur collaborateur. Une formation ciblée sur votre domaine d’activité, pour que son apprentissage colle à vos besoins.
Panel sur la dualité linguistique et la Loi sur les langues officielles : les trois principaux partis acceptent l'invitation de la FCFA
25 mai - La FCFA est fière d’annoncer que les trois principaux partis politiques fédéraux ont accepté son invitation à participer à un panel sur la dualité linguistique et le respect de la Loi sur les langues officielles. Quelque 200 personnes assisteront à ce panel qui aura lieu à l’Université d’Ottawa le jeudi 4 juin, en marge de la 40e Assemblée générale annuelle de la FCFA. Il sera diffusé en direct sur le Web sur la page Facebook iVote-jeVote et enregistré pour diffusion en différé par la chaîne parlementaire CPAC.
Au cours de ce panel, Jacques Gourde (Parti conservateur du Canada), Yvon Godin (Nouveau Parti démocratique) et l’hon. Stéphane Dion (Parti libéral du Canada) présenteront la vision et les engagements de leur parti sur une variété d’enjeux touchant la francophonie et la dualité linguistique au pays.
« À l’approche des élections fédérales, les francophones partout au pays tiennent à savoir où se situent les partis sur les grandes questions qui touchent le respect de la Loi sur les langues officielles et l’essor des collectivités de langue française. Nous sommes très heureux que les trois partis aient accepté de participer à ce panel », déclare la présidente de la FCFA, Marie-France Kenny.
La FCFA invite les citoyens et les citoyennes francophones à envoyer des questions en vue du panel, d’ici le 2 juin, à l’adresse firstname.lastname@example.org. D’autre part, ceux et celles qui souhaitent poser des questions durant le panel pourront le faire sur Twitter en utilisant le mot-clique #panelLO2015 ; la Fédération s’engage à ce qu'une ou deux questions au cours du panel proviennent des médias sociaux.
Le panel sur la dualité linguistique et la Loi sur les langues officielles sera animé par Linda Godin, de la chaîne éducative TFO. La FCFA apprécie le soutien logistique de la Chaire de recherche Jean-Luc Pepin de la Faculté des Sciences sociales de l’Université d’Ottawa dans l'organisation de cet événement.
En savoir plus sur le panel
The Karolinska Institute in Stockholm today released its English translation of a report critical of surgeon Paolo Macchiarini, famous for transplanting tissue-engineered tracheae into more than a dozen people. The report concludes that Macchiarini committed scientific misconduct in publications describing the results of several of the transplants. Karolinska, where Macchiarini is a visiting professor, commissioned the external inquiry after allegations arose in August 2014.
The investigator, Bengt Gerdin, professor emeritus of surgery at Uppsala University, examined six papers about the patients and one on animal tests of the procedure and found multiple problems that he deemed serious enough to constitute misconduct, including inaccurate descriptions of the condition of patients at the time of publication and stating that ethical permission had been obtained for the work although there is none on record. The report, submitted to the Karolinska vice chancellor on 13 May, concludes that Macchiarini “bears the main responsibility for the publication of false or incomplete information in several papers, and is therefore guilty of scientific misconduct.”
Macchiarini has disputed the allegations, but he told ScienceInsider that he could not comment further until Karolinska Vice Chancellor Anders Hamsten issues his decision on the case. That is expected sometime in June.
Macchiarini and his colleagues attracted widespread attention by developing a technique intended to help patients whose tracheae were badly damaged by cancer, injury, or birth defects. They designed a polymer scaffold, which is seeded with the patient’s stem cells to construct a replacement trachea. The stem cells are supposed to grow over the scaffold and eventually develop into a living organ.
The allegations of misconduct came from four researchers at the Karolinska Institute and the affiliated Karolinska University Hospital, where three transplants took place. The four critics—who co-authored several of the controversial papers—say they became concerned in the fall of 2013 when they learned of serious complications in the first patient to receive an artificial trachea at Karolinska. (They say they were not involved in the care of that patient after the initial surgery in 2011. He was treated at a hospital at Karolinska’s Huddinge campus, 25 kilometers from the critics’ primary location in Solna.) When they looked into the case records of the patients operated on at Karolinska, they concluded that the papers failed to mention the serious complications the patients had suffered, and ultimately asked Karolinska to investigate.
In particular dispute is a paper published in December 2011 in The Lancet. It claims that, 5 months after surgery, the recipient, a 36-year-old graduate student, had no complications and the graft was showing early signs of tissue growth. However, there are no clinical records of the patient’s status 5 months after surgery, Gerdin points out; the available clinical data in the records were from August, 11 weeks after surgery. In November, several weeks after the paper was accepted but before it was published, the patient was readmitted to Karolinska with complications that ultimately required a stent to keep his airway open. The engineered trachea had significant problems, the critics say in their complaint, but Macchiarini did not notify The Lancet. Nor did he mention the complications in a Lancet review paper published 3 months later. That paper says that the graft was in good condition 8 months after surgery.
In his initial written response to the accusations, Macchiarini denied any misrepresentation. Philipp Jungebluth, an assistant professor at Karolinska who was recruited with Macchiarini as a postdoctoral researcher, also maintains that all the papers in question are accurate. Both he and Macchiarini say that the complications that arose after the paper was accepted were not relevant, because the article was intended to provide a clinical snapshot. Jungebluth says that despite the complications, the patient did well for at least a year after his initial surgery. He finished his studies and had a second child after the transplant, Jungebluth notes. All the patients who received artificial tracheae were complex medical cases who had no other options, he says, and post-transplant complications were to be expected.
The four physicians who reported concerns about Macchiarini also alleged that he did not get proper authorization from an ethics review board for the surgeries and failed to get informed consent from the patients. Such issues fall under Swedish health care law rather than scientific misconduct regulations, Gerdin says, so his report did not pass final judgment on those allegations. The Swedish Medical Products Agency referred the case to a prosecutor earlier this month.
A separate investigation by Karolinska’s ethics council into allegations of misconduct brought by Pierre Delaere, a surgeon at UZ Leuven in Belgium, was completed in April. Delaere, who has developed a different method for replacing a damaged trachea, has long criticized Macchiarini’s work, saying that his papers do not reflect the true condition of the trachea recipients. The ethics council report concluded that Delaere’s complaints were either due to a difference of opinion or were too vague to be substantiated. Gerdin says he does not disagree with that report. The allegations brought by the Karolinska researchers were more concrete, Gerdin says, and addressed specific discrepancies between patient records and published papers.
Gerdin’s report says Macchiarini bears the primary responsibility for the misconduct. However, he also faults the Karolinska Institute for failing to anticipate that Macchiarini’s surgeries would need clear ethical oversight and the co-authors for signing off on papers that were inaccurate.
Macchiarini and the researchers who brought the complaints have 2 weeks to comment on Gerdin’s findings. Vice Chancellor Hamsten will then decide what action to take, a Karolinska representative says.
Posted in People & Events, Scientific Community Scientific Misconduct
The End of Days by Jenny Erpenbeck, published by Portobello, has won the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize.
Erpenbeck, described by Michel Faber as “one of the finest, most exciting authors alive” shares the £10,000 with her translator, Susan Bernofsky. They were presented with the prize at an award ceremony at the Royal Institute of British Architects in London this evening, Wednesday, May 27th.
Having been longlisted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize in 2001 for The Old Child, The Book of Words and then shortlisted in 2011 with her novel Visitation, Erpenbeck is the only living German author to have won the prize in its 25-year history. WG Sebald (Austerlitz which won in 2002) and Gert Hofmann (The Film Explainer, won in 1995) were both awarded the prize posthumously.
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She beat off opposition from Haruki Murakami, Erwin Mortier, fellow German Daniel Kehlmann, Colombian Tomás González and Juan Tomás Ávila Laurel from Equatorial Guinea.
The End of Days is a story of the 20th century traced through the various possible lives of one woman. Moving from a small Galician town at the turn of the century, through prewar Vienna and Stalin’s Moscow to present-day Berlin, Erpenbeck homes in on the moments when life follows a particular branch and “fate” suddenly emerges from the sly interplay between history, character and pure chance. Described by judge Antonia Lloyd Jones as “a work of genius”, it offers a unique view on 20th-century history.
Judge Boyd Tonkin said of the winner: “This is a novel to enjoy, to cherish, and to revisit many times. Into its brief span Jenny Erpenbeck packs a century of upheaval, always rooted in the chances and choices of one woman’s life. It is both written and translated with an almost uncanny beauty, which grows not out of historical abstractions but from the shocks and hopes of everyday life, and from our common quest for peace, home and love. Re-reading this jewel of a book, I came to feel as if both WG Sebald and Virginia Woolf would recognise a kindred spirit here.”
Now a bestseller in Europe, The End of Days has already received much praise and admiration. It won the prestigious Hans Fallada Prize and has been endorsed as part of the English PEN Writers in Translation programme, celebrating its 10th birthday this year. Susan Bernofsky first encountered Erpenbeck’s work on a translator’s study tour around Germany. She picked up a copy of her first book (Geschichte vom alten Kind) when they visited her then publisher, Eichborn, in Frankfurt, and “spent the rest of the trip raving about it”. She said: “Jenny’s lyrical style bears uncanny similarities to the way I myself write in English, and translating her prose always feels like a homecoming. The End of Days is our fourth book together, and I consider it her strongest to date. It was a challenge-but also fun-to translate the many different voices in the book’s various chapters, each of which represents a distinct era.”
Antonia Byatt, Arts Council England’s director of literature, said: “The End of Days is a truly remarkable novel, taking the reader on an imaginative journey across countries and continents, tracing the major historical events of twentieth-century Europe through the life (or should that be lives?) of one woman, born at the edge of the Austro-Hungarian empire as the century begins. With an invigorating structure and a varied prose style – sometimes crisp, in other parts more allusive and sinuous - this book explores ideas of time, memory and family, and reveals that what we might term ‘fate’ or ‘chance’ can pivot on the smallest of circumstances yet have an enormous effect on the course of a life, or even bring it to an abrupt end. Jenny Erpenbeck is a worthy winner of this year’s prize and her lucid prose is matched by Susan Bernofsky’s wonderful translati
The judges also gave special mention to In the Beginning Was the Sea, the debut novel by Colombian writer Tomás González, translated by Irishman Frank Wynne. First published in 1983 by a nightclub where the author worked as a barman, this novel was published into English by Pushkin Press over 30 years later. Based on a true story, In the Beginning Was the Sea gives a dramatic and searingly ironic account of the disastrous encounter of the imagined life with reality. Helen Oyeyemi described the book as “quietly profound, finely wrought and containing a wave-like motion within its prose”.
Erpenbeck was born in East Berlin in 1967. She has worked on opera and musical productions and her fiction has been translated into 14 languages worldwide. She is the author of The Old Child, The Book of Words (longlisted for the 2001 IFFP), and Visitation which was shortlisted for the 2011 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize.
Bernofsky is a translator and author. She directs the literary translation program in the School of the Arts MFA Program in Writing at Columbia University. She has translated over 20 books and her awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2014, as well as the 2006 Helen and Kurt Wolff Translation Prize and the 2012 Hermann Hesse Translation Prize.
A l’association Parler en paix, on vient pour étudier à la fois l’arabe et l’hébreu. Histoire de mieux se connaître et de dépasser le conflit israélo-palestien.
Le 11 janvier, la télévision l’a immortalisé distribuant aux manifestants qui convergeaient vers la place de la République des affichettes sur lesquelles on pouvait lire «Je suis Charlie» en français, en arabe («ana Charlie») et en hébreu («ani Charlie»). Pour Gérard, être présent ce jour-là dans la foule avec ce message en trois langues était une évidence : «l’esprit Charlie», tant décrié aujourd’hui par certains, il le pratique au quotidien depuis qu’il a contribué à créer, il y a onze ans, l’association Parler en paix, qui enseigne l’arabe et l’hébreu. «Pendant la dernière Intifada ...