Archive for the ‘language week’ Category

More doubts about te reo Māori

23 July 2012

Te reo (the language) Māori (mri) holds a special place in language revitalization as the first language to undergo successful revitalization. Their language nest program provided a cultural framework with which to promote language use, and their model was adapted for the Hawaiian language, which has also been successful. The Māori program is therefore looked to for both practice and inspiration.

This week is Māori Language Week, running from 23 to 29 July, and 1 August will be the 25 anniversary of the Māori Language Commission. And this occasion is also bringing focus to questions that have risen recently about whether the Māori program will survive.

Read “Māori Language Week: Te reo becoming lost in translation” for an outlook of both optimism and pessimism about the future of Māori. Also, see other posts on this blog by clicking on the Māori link below.

Samoan Language Week 2011: Samoa Ola – Samoa Active

31 May 2011

In addition to being an official language of Samoa (along with English), Samoan (smo) is spoken in American Samoa, Fiji, New Zealand, Tonga and the US. According to the Ethnologue, there are 370,000 speakers all told, 200,000 of which are in Samoa. The UNESCO Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger does not list Samoan, but the desire to keep the Samoan culture intact while the community has spread throughout the Pacific Ocean has led to an interesting movement: the Samoan Language Week.

Samoan Language Week runs from Wednesday, June 1 to Tuesday, June 7, starting on Samoan Independence Day. (According to “Happy 47 and 1/2 Birthday Samoa!” the actual date of independence was January 1, 1962, but was moved because January 1 is a holiday for the new year.)

According to “Celebrate Samoan Language Week with the NZETC” on the New Zealand Electronic Text Centre, Radio Niu FM began the Samoan Language Week movement at least four years ago. According to “Samoan Language Week USA Kicks Off Today” on Voxy, New Zealand’s Human Rights Commission and the National Commission for UNESCO set up a Facebook page in 2010. This is the main page for participants to communicate.

According to the Human Rights Commission page, “Samoan Language Week was first promoted by Radio Niu FM as part of a series of Pacific language weeks leading up to Māori Language Week.” The Facebook page for Māori Language Week says that Māori language celebrations have been held since 1975.

This year, the US is joining in the Samoan Language Week celebrations. There is a special Facebook page with a calendar of events, including a day for reading and a day for conversations.

Update to SOAS’ Endangered Languages Week

22 April 2007

The entry for SOAS’ Endangered Languages Week has been updated and corrected. Thanks to Peter K. Austin for the timely information.