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[from Peter K. Austin
Department of Linguistics, SOAS
24 December 2009
]

The Endangered Languages Academic Programme at SOAS is holding a workshop on Endangered Languages, Endangered Knowledge and Sustainability on Saturday 27th February 2010, from 9.30am to 6.00pm. The goal of the workshop is to explore sustainable approaches in our field: sustainability of endangered languages, and sustainability of research (in both theory and practice).

Issues to be discussed include:

  • how communities can sustain languages and linguistic ecologies
  • links between language maintenance and sustainable human development
  • preservation of traditional knowledge and indigenous paradigms of teaching, learning, and research
  • making the outcomes of our research sustainable
  • whether sustaining languages and knowledge is something that researchers can contribute to, or is solely the responsibility of communities and speakers

The keynote speaker at the workshop will be Professor Lenore Grenoble, Carl Darling Buck Professor at the University of Chicago. Prof Grenoble is a world leader in research on endangered languages, with several influential publications and extensive fieldwork experience. She is an ELDP panel member, Vice-president of the Endangered Language Fund, and is involved in several other major international projects, with a focus on the impact of climate change on languages and cultures of the Arctic.

Proposals are invited for papers which present cutting-edge research on any of the topics outlined above. Each speaker will have 20 minutes plus 10 minutes for discussion, followed by further plenary discussion. Abstracts should be a maximum of 300 words (not including any references) and should be sent to: elap -AT- soas.ac.uk.

The deadline for abstract submission is Friday 15th January 2010. Notification of acceptance will be sent by 30th January. We plan to publish the proceedings of the workshop in our journal Language Documentation and Description.

The workshop is one of the events planned for Endangered Languages Week 2010.

To attend the workshop, you need to submit a booking form [.doc] by Friday 19th February 2010. The cost is GBP17.50 for full registration and GBP12.50 for student/ELAP alumni/staff registration. Registration will include a reading pack, tea and coffee and lunch.

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The Transient Building, symbolising the impermanence of language, houses both the Linguistics Department at Sydney University and PARADISEC, a digital archive for endangered Pacific languages and music.
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