CoLang 2016 is coming to UAF
The Institute on Collaborative Language Research (CoLang) will be held on the campus of the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 2016. The Institute consists of two parts: two weeks of intensive workshops followed by a four-week practicum in “field linguistics” in which students work hands-on with speakers of an endangered language. CoLang 2016 will focus on two major themes: languages of the Pacific Rim and language archiving.
'Never Alone' game features Iñupiaq story
"Kisima Inŋitchuŋa" ("Never Alone"), a video game based on an Iñupiaq legend, invites players to guide an Iñupiaq girl and a playful arctic fox as they try to save her village from a long-lasting blizzard. The game has been described as a way to pass old stories to a generation attuned to electronic communications.
Ronald Brower, who teaches Iñupiaq at the Alaska Native Language Center at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, narrates the game's trailer.
This video game is available through Amazon and Barnes and Noble websites.
New oral history of the Lower Yukon
Nunamta Ellamta-llu Ayuqucia / What Our Land and World Are Like is a collaboration between community members in Kotlik, Emmonak, Alakanuk, and Nunam Iqua who have worked together with the Calista Elders Council to record the history of their land and lives. Oral historian Alice Rearden and anthropologist Ann Fienup-Riordan produced this book, which is richly illustrated with maps and historical and current-day photos. The 656-page paperback is $35 and can be ordered from the ANLC.
Gwich'in site focuses on caribou
Vadzaih.com, a fascinating new site, examines the role of caribou in the Gwich'in culture.
Elders in western Alaska have compiled "A Guide to the Ethnobotany of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Region." It describes many plant species and provides the Yup'ik names and the meaning of the name. Also shown are the English and scientific names, and many entries are illustrated with photos. Chapters are devoted to trees and shrubs, edible berries, mouse foods, other edible plants, medicinals, poisonous plants, grasses and sedges, ferns, mosses, miscellaneous plants, algae, lichens, and fungi. Download the PDF.
Mount McKinley or Denali?
Sen. Lisa Murkowski has proposed officially giving the name Denali to the continent's tallest peak, Mount McKinley. Shem Pete's Alaska, a book by James Kari and James Fall published in 2003 by the University of Alaska Press, has a three-page section, "Names for Denali/Mt. McKinley in Alaska Native Languages." [download]
Indigenous Peoples and Languages of Alaska [map]
A new edition of the groundbreaking map showing the indigenous language regions of Alaska—and related languages of neighboring areas of Canada and Russia—is now available. Native villages now are identified in the local language as well as in English. It is the first revision in nearly 30 years. The map, generated with geographic information system (GIS) technology, is the joint product of the Alaska Native Language Center and UAA’s Institute of Social and Economic Research. This work updates the map originally compiled in 1974 by former ANLC Director Michael Krauss and last updated in 1982. [Buy]
[Download a smaller, free version suitable for PowerPoint and classroom/office presentations]
The Talking Alaska blog provides reflections on Alaska's Native languages.
UAF's Applied Linguistics program and the Lower Kuskokwim and Lower Yukon School Districts have launched a new site, Piciryaramta Elicungcallra, about language immersion and programming.
New Iñupiaq-English dictionary
Edna MacLean's new Iñupiaq-to-English dictionary is available in the Alaska Native Language Archive.
Dr. Walkie Charles: "Dynamic Assessment in a Yup'ik L2 Intermediate Adult Classroom"
By invitation of the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Dr. Charles just returned from a speaking engagement regarding educational relationships-framed by cultural and linguistics differences-between students and teachers in the classroom that mirror many of his own experiences growing up in a small rural village in Alaska.
About the ANLC
The Alaska Native Language Center was established in 1972 by state legislation as a center for the documentation and cultivation of the state's 20 Native languages. [Mission statement]