Where Do We Need to Go From Here?



Communities in Control: Learning tools and strategies for multilingual endangered language communities

The Mercator Research Centre, SOAS World Languages Institute, the Interdisciplinary Centre for Social and Language Documentation and the Foundation for Endangered Languages cordially invite scholars, community organisations and community members working on the revitalization of endangered languages, its documentation and archiving to join the International Conference on “Communities in Control” that will take place in Alcanena, Portugal, on October 19-21 2017.

This conference is organised together with the Foundation of Endangered Languages as FEL XXI, the 21st issue of a series of yearly conferences for which printed proceedings will be published.

During the last two decades many regional minority and endangered languages have been documented, a process which has led to the creation of different archived collections. This has been, however, mostly, a scholar-driven effort and the concerned language communities have, themselves, not been involved in it and have not identified with the documentation projects. Most of the data thus produced, especially archived material, has, consequently, been too little used by communities for their own initiatives.

This situation requires an urgent shift in the research model and archive interfaces. It is extremely important to work directly and in collaboration with the speech communities but crucially, also, to empower these communities and provide them with the ability to participate with their own expertise in the definition and implementation of research agendas and projects, thus making it possible for their needs and interests to determine that implementation.

Whilst it is understandable that language documentation should follow the initiatives of scholars as well as communities, revitalisation, for its part, if it is to be successful, needs to be entirely community-driven. Revitalisation should be a bottom-up process, motivated, desired and designed by the community; it must be integrated into its everyday life and inseparable from it.

Conference Details:                                                                                                    Where: Hotel Eurosol Alcanena (Portugal)                                                                    Deadline for abstract submission: July 15th, 2017
Registration start date: June 30th, 2017
Notification of acceptance: August 1st, 2017
Deadline for submission of papers (draft): September 15th, 2017
Event dates: October 19th-21st, 2017

To learn more and for registration, visit: http://www.cidles.eu/events/mercator-soas-cidles-fel-2017/

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