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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Dissertation Information

Title: Rhetorical Strategies and Political Gift Giving in the Orinoco Delta Add Dissertation
Author: Juan Rodriguez Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Department of Anthropology
Completed in: 2011
Linguistic Subfield(s): Anthropological Linguistics;
Director(s): Charles Hofling
Anthony Webster
Jonathan Hill
Laura Graham

Abstract: This dissertation addresses the intersection of rhetoric and material
exchange in the construction of political alliance and conflict between the
Waraos indigenous population and the non-indigenous institutions and
political actors in the Orinoco Delta, Venezuela. It deals with the
discursive and material strategies used to construct political reality at
the moment of the emergence of one of the so-called new South American left
wing populist governments (Hugo Chavez presidency since 1998). These
historical circumstances present an opportunity to open a discussion
bringing together the recent developments of discourse-centered approaches
to culture, language ideologies, and the most classical theories on
material exchange. This research's aim is to understand how multiple sign
systems (in this case language and material gifts) interact, contradict,
and support each other. In sum, this dissertation uses the advances of
discourse-centered approaches to culture and the anthropological theories
of exchange to understand how language and gift giving has shaped history
and political imagination in the Orinoco Delta and Venezuela.