Archive for the ‘palawa kani’ Category

Auntie picks up palawa kani story

13 June 2012

The Australian Broadcasting Company, known affectionately as “Auntie,” has a report on palawa kani, the Tasmanian language reconstructed from between six and a dozen extinct Tasmanian languages.

Titled “The ears of the nation turn to Tasmania to save a language – introducing ‘Tassie black fella talk,’” the article provides a brief background on the fact-finding mission of the Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs, and includes a vocabulary list of more than 100 palawa kani words. Among the words are place names and “purinina,” meaning “Tasmanian devil,” the largest marsupial in the world (made famous by Looney Tunes with its character Taz).

See also “Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre testifying for palawa kani” on this blog.

Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre testifying for palawa kani

24 May 2012

In what appears to be part of the inquiry by the Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs into incorporating Aboriginal languages into the school curriculum (see “AU government hears how children light up when learning Yawuru“), a committee meeting was scheduled for today in Tasmania.

The Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre was expected to provide testimony on the state of palawa kani and how the national government is failing in its obligations to protect Aboriginal languages.

Without an ISO three-letter code and not listed in the Ethnologue, palawa kani is a reconstructed language, recreated from at least six local languages once spoken in Tasmania.

According to the Wikipedia article, the language was born in 1999. According to “palawa kani mapali [Tasmania],” the language was spoken in a presentation in Hawai’i that same year. According to “‘Language of the Month’ palawa Kani,” in 2005, a CD titled “pakana luwana liyini: Aboriginal Girls Sing” was released, featuring songs written by young local Aboriginal girls. It was produced following a CD two years earlier.

Also see “Dewayne singing Tasmanian Aboriginal song,” with a video of Dewayne Everettsmith singing in palawa kani about the connection to the land. Perhaps his sweet tones could be used to charm the Australian government!

(Capital letters are not used in palawa kani; the capital “K” in the Wikipedia article is due to a programming requirement that all Wikipedia articles begin with a capital letter.)