Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Oral language Further preserved at University of Goroka

Associate Professor Steven Bird with two workshop participants learning how to use the digital voice recorders

Mr Philip Tama from the University of Goroka's Language & Literature department recording members of the Alekano Gako Oti'tive group

On Monday, February 8, 2010, a three-day workshop on the preservation of indigenous linguistic heritage via Basic Oral Language Documentation (BOLD) was opened at the University of Goroka. The workshop is an exciting step forward from the study of the Alekano language offered to students by the Language and Literature department of UOG.

The University of Goroka is participating in the workshop as part of the BOLD project.

Visiting academic and facilitator Associate Professor Steven Bird, from the University of Melbourne, was at UOG to conduct the workshop voluntarily to students and staff from the Language and Literature Department of the University.

Day one involved demonstration on the use of a digital voice recorder, 35 of which have been donated by Associate Professor Bird to the Language and Literature department through the generosity of Olympus.

Participants also had practical lessons on how to use the recorders, and practised on each other the new techniques learnt.

The workshop was also attended by representatives of the Alekano Gako Oti’tive (Alekano language revitalisation group) and three volunteers from the Summer Institute of Linguistics (SIL).

Vice Chancellor of the University of Goroka Dr Gairo Onagi officially opened the workshop by stating that: “language is very important to us as it is life.”

Dr Onagi thanked Associate Professor Bird for his interest in coming to UOG and welcomed him to the campus.

He was grateful that Associate Professor Bird could teach staff and students new technology and methodology to record and preserve languages.

Dr Onagi challenged the workshop participants to learn more about their culture via language technology and innovation.

He ended by telling participants that “this is the salvation to dying languages”.

Associate Professor Bird stated that language preservation was at a very exciting moment as it has a lot of new technological solutions appropriate to capture languages before they became extinct.

He was glad to see the university’s support for languages and culture, and was appreciative to help the University of Goroka achieve its vision of language promotion and the study and preservation of Melanesian culture.

The workshop continues until Wednesday, February 10, 2010.

For more information on the BOLD project and the workshop visit http://boldpng.info/

2 comments:

  1. With regard to the campaign to save endangered and dying languages, can I point to the contribution, made by the World Esperanto Association, to UNESCO's campaign.

    The commitment was made, by the World Esperanto Association at the United Nations' Geneva HQ in September.
    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=eR7vD9kChBA&feature=related

    Your readers may be interested in http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=_YHALnLV9XU Professor Piron was a translator with the United Nations in Geneva.

    A glimpse of Esperanto can be seen at http://www.lernu.net

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  2. I have been visiting various blogs for my term papers writing research. I have found your blog to be quite useful. Keep updating your blog with valuable information... Regards

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