LINGUIST List 14.3524

Fri Dec 19 2003

Diss: Applied Ling/Socioling: Tulloch: 'The...'

Editor for this issue: Takako Matsui <>


  1. shelley.tulloch, The Promotion of Inuktitut among Inuit Youth

Message 1: The Promotion of Inuktitut among Inuit Youth

Date: Thu, 18 Dec 2003 15:29:27 -0500 (EST)
From: shelley.tulloch <>
Subject: The Promotion of Inuktitut among Inuit Youth

Institution: Laval University
Program: Department of Languages, Linguistics, and Translation
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2004

Author: Shelley Robin Tulloch

Dissertation Title: The Promotion of Inuktitut among Inuit Youth:
Language Attitudes as a Basis for Language Planning

Linguistic Field: Sociolinguistics, Applied Linguistics,
Anthropological Linguistics 

Subject Language: Inuktitut, Eastern Canadian (code: ESB)

Dissertation Director 1: Conrad Ouellon
Dissertation Director 2: Louis-Jacques Dorais

Dissertation Abstract:

The objective of this thesis was to identify language perceptions and
attitudes among Inuit youth (18-25 years old) in three Baffin Island
communities: Iqaluit, Pangnirtung and Pond Inlet. The premise of the
study was that the Inuktitut language will only thrive if young Inuit
are committed to using and maintaining their ancestral language.

Semi-directed interviews (37) and closed questionnaires (130) elicited
information on day-to-day language choice, perceptions of language
use, problems or concerns in daily language use, symbolic and
practical value of Inuktitut, English and French, and opinions about
the promotion of Inuktitut in Nunavut. These language perceptions and
attitudes expressed by young Inuit illuminate reasons for the current
level of use of Inuktitut and help prioritize areas for future
language planning.

Findings suggest that although Inuktitut remains relatively strong,
Inuit youth are aware of and sensitive to the loss of Inuktitut,
particularly in Iqaluit. Inuktitut is valued by Inuit youth because it
is the mother tongue; the language of Inuit tradition, culture and
identity; a "fun" language; a language that is being lost; a useful
language for getting a job; and an effective tool for participating
and integrating in the community. At the same time, English is valued
because it is a "cool" language, the language of the new millennium
that allows Inuit youth to travel, get an education, get jobs, and
participate in their local communities and beyond.

Inuit youth are strongly motivated to maintain both Inuktitut and
English. They need both languages in order to pursue their aspirations
of making the best of both worlds in which they are currently
negotiating their place.
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