"Combining Documentation Initiatives with Language Instruction"
November 21, 12:00pm - 1:15pm
Manoa Campus, Moore Hall 258
Special presentation via Skype sponsored by the Center for Second Language Research:
Combining Documentation Initiatives with Language Instruction to Improve Bilingual Education at Wapichana (Arawak) Schools in Brazil
Dr. Luiz Amaral, Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (Spanish and Portuguese), University of Massachusetts Amherst
Dr. Barbara Zurer Pearson, Department of Linguistics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Our presentation will discuss the crucial role bilingualism could play in the maintenance of an endangered Amazonian language, Wapichana, at the individual and community level.
Pearson will provide background on the factors used to evaluate the vitality of a minority language and will respond to the question: What are the odds within this community that its children will be able to—and will want to—develop skills in both Brazilian Portuguese and Wapichana?
Amaral will describe his project at Wapichana communities in partnership with the Federal University of Roraima, local language teachers, and the Brazilian Museo do Índio to bring together language documentation and language teaching—in the service of recording and hopefully reversing the decline in the use of the Wapichana language. He will also present the UNESCO/Museu do Índio Pedagogical Grammar project that he is currently coordinating. This project involves linguists and teachers working with five different languages: Wapichana (Arawak), Paresi (Arawak), Ikpeng (Karib), Kawaiweté (Tupi), and Karajá (Jê).
Department of Second Language Studies, Manoa Campus