06 Apr '12, 8pm

Keeping languages alive: A different kind of conservation

Keeping languages alive: A different kind of conservation

Fort Mojave Indian tribal grounds. (Photo: Rick harrison/by-nc/sa/Flickr) By Pete Zrioka , Arizona State University Languages have a history of being lost in the United States. Through the process of cultural assimilation, many immigrants settle here and lose linguistic ties to their home countries in a few generations. Historically, this was a commonplace, even deliberate process for many European settlers. It is a fundamentally different matter, however, when Native Americans begin to lose their languages. This is their place of origin, the stronghold of cultural and linguistic identity. When a language ceases to be spoken in its homeland, it is at risk of vanishing forever. To prevent that from happening, Arizona State University’s Center for Indian Education (CIE) is working with Southwest tribes to document and revitalize the languages of indigenous people. One partne...

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/arts-culture/stories/keeping...

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