LINGUIST List 9.858

Wed Jun 10 1998

Confs: Endangered Languages

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  1. Nicholas Ostler, Endangered Languages - Edinburgh, Sept 98 - Call for Registration

Message 1: Endangered Languages - Edinburgh, Sept 98 - Call for Registration

Date: Tue, 9 Jun 1998 21:34:23 +0100
From: Nicholas Ostler <>
Subject: Endangered Languages - Edinburgh, Sept 98 - Call for Registration

Endangered Languages - What Role for the The Specialist?
- ------------------------------------------------
Edinburgh, Scotland - 25-27 September 1998


The conference will provide a forum for researchers and activists
working for the maintenance of indigenous languages that face an
uncertain future.


In recent years, number of support organizations have established
themselves, all aiming to mobilize research effort, popular opinion
and money in defence of declining languages.

The question is often raised of how these outsiders can really help
the cause that they have identified. Language communities must have
inner strength in order to survive, or at least the will and the means
to go on using their traditional tongues. Outside organizations,
however well-meaning, cannot supply such qualities directly. Some ask
whether the organizations even have the right to try to interfere.

This conference, the second organized by the Foundation for Endangered
Languages, is seeking answers to one part of this question. How can
language specialists, whether professional linguists, educators, media
professionals or whoever, actually contribute to language maintenance?

We shall be hearing of the actual effects of professional involvement
on small language communities throughout the world.

We do not expect a common set of conclusions to emerge from this
sharing of experience and analysis. But we shall be looking at the
variety we find, and asking if it points to a good way to define the
roles of the support organizations: how they can complement one
another, perhaps sharing techniques, perhaps transmitting knowledge?

Some Themes that will be addressed:

When does the professional best act as an external consultant,
when as a team-player?

What are useful relations:
among grammarians,lexicographers and sociolinguists?
among community-leaders, language-activists and language-scientists?
among ordinary speakers, creative users, broadcasters and publishers?

What have been great successes in specialist language work, and what
motivated the people responsible?

How does local work benefit from EL support organizations with a
global or continental view? Is the need for technical assistance,
production of materials, publicity, funding, political agitation?

Should EL support organizations themselves specialize?
If so how: regionally, or by function?

The dates will be 25-27 September 1998, and the venue the Pollock
Halls in Edinburgh. There will be a preliminary volume of proceedings
distributed at the Conference.

All presentations should be accessible in English, but there may well
be use of the languages of interest, for quotation or exemplification.


Dr Nicholas Ostler-Foundation for Endangered Languages, Bath, England

Mrs Margaret Allen-Foundation for Endangered Languages, York, England

Dr Briony Williams-University of Edinburgh, Scotland

Programme Committee:

Akira Yamamoto, Andrew Woodfield, Anthony Woodbury, Tasaku Tsunoda,
Jane Simpson, Mari Rhydwen, Jon Reyhner, Nicholas Ostler, David Nash,
Christopher Moseley, John Clews, Margaret Allen.

Intended Programme

Friday, 25 September
Session 1 Endangered Languages: What Role for the Specialist?
Keynote Speaker:
Donna B. Gerdts: The Linguist in Language Revitalization Programmes
 (Salishan, Canada)
Session 2 Un peu d'histoire
Kim Hardie Role of Specialists: the Case of Flemish in Belgium
Jens E. Jahn Istria: Between Ethnic Awakening & Nationalism
Ken Mackinnon The Past and Future of Scots Gaelic (Celtic)

Saturday, 26 September
Session 3 Successful interactions
Mick Mallon A Partnership: Two Old Men Eskimo
Jon Reyhner, Gina Cantoni What Educators Can Do

Session 4 Understanding the Language from the Inside
Louanna Furbee Two Kinds of Expert in Language Renewal (Siouan)
Rob. Bolognesi Standardization: the Case of Sardinian
V. Grondona Speakers and the language specialist: Mocovi
 (Waikuruan, Argentina)

Session 5 Annual General Meeting (Foundation for Endangered Languages)

Session 6 Understanding the Language from the Outside
Diego Quesada Competing Interpretations: What if they are Wrong?
 (Chibchan, Costa Rica)
Tapani Salminen Minority Languages in a Society in Turmoil
 (North of Russian Fed. (Ural./Tungus./ Turk/Paleosib.)
Lynn Landweer Indicators of Vitality: Labu and Vanimo
 (Austronesian/Sko, NiuGini)

Sunday, 27 September
Session 7 The New Role of Information Technology
Bojan Petek Slovenian Language in the Information Age
RC MacDougall Effects and Defects of E-mail (Mohawk, US)
Mari Rhydwen Strategies for Doing the Impossible (Australia)

Session 8 Taking Stock
H. Valiquette First Things First
Akira Yamamoto Language Community, Scientific Community
 & Mutually Supported Community

The conference will feature social events, including a Conference
dinner and an Expedition in the Edinburgh area.

There is a discount of 10.00 (pounds sterling) for registrations made
before 1 July 1998.

Attendees at the Conference (including speakers) need to be paid-up
members of the Foundation. Payment of subscriptions will be possible
at the conference.

- ----------------------------------

Address for Correspondence


Area (s) of interest

Phone number


Fax number

Booking Option

[Please choose Option 1, 2, 3 or 4 from the list of packages below]

BOOKING OPTIONS: [All prices in pounds sterling - UK currency] Each
package includes 3 lunches/2 dinners/tea/coffee, registration
(proceedings, conference folders, excursion); for residents, it also
includes 2 nights' bed & breakfast (25-27 Sept).

Package Regular Student
1. Single Room, without en-suite shower 100.00 90.00

2. Single Room, with en-suite shower 130.00 120.00

3. Shared Double Room, with en-suite shower 120.00 110.00

4. Non-resident (meals + breaks only) 55.00 45.00

Note;. We will try as far as possible to accommodate any special
requirements you may have. Please send details as early as possible
about the following: special dietary requirements, partial attendance
at the conference, or accommodation for more than 2 nights etc.

[For non-members] Standard Unwaged
[ ] Please enrol me as a member of the Foundation: 20.00
[ ] Please enrol me as a member of the Foundation: 10.00
 [Enclose proof of unwaged (e.g. student) status.]

Remember to deduct 10 pounds if you are paying before July 1st, 1998!

Further note: We have endeavoured to keep costs to an absolute
minimum, to maximize access. However, any surplus in the fund which
is paying for this will go to support our work in documentation and
promotion of endangered languages. If you can, please add a donation,
marking the item below.

Possible donation [ pounds]

Please write the total amount of your payment [ pounds]

Methods of Payment
- -----------------------------
1. UK cheques (in pounds sterling) should be made payable to:
 Foundation for Endangered Languages

2. For cheques in other currencies please add 10% to cover bank

3. The appropriate amount may be transferred directly to: Foundation
for Endangered Languages Account 50073456. Sort Code 08-90-02.
Co-operative Bank,16 St.Stephen Street, Bristol, BS1 1JR, England

4. To pay by by Credit Card [VISA/MasterCard] please complete the

Name as on C/card
Address as on C/Card.
Credit Card Number
C/Card Date of Expiry

Please return this form with your payment to:
Margaret J. Allen
Treasurer, Foundation for Endangered Languages
14, Newland Park close,
York Y010 3HW England

- --------------------------------------------------------------
 Nicholas Ostler
Managing Director President
Linguacubun Ltd Foundation for Endangered Languages

 Batheaston Villa, 172 Bailbrook Lane
 Bath BA1 7AA England
 +44-1225-85-2865 fax +44-1225-85-9258
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