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Cathy Bow: 'Exploring the Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages', 9 October 2015

Shape, University of Melbourne

Date: 9 October 2015

Living Archive of Aboriginal LanguagesWhen: 3.15pm-4.15pm, 9 October 2015

WhereRoom 407, Babel (Building 139), University of Melbourne

Thousands of resources in dozens of Australian Indigenous languages are becoming available online through the Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages website. Many of these resources were developed in bilingual school programs in remote schools across the Northern Territory over several decades, and more materials continue to be added from other communities and languages of this region. This archive provides access to a wealth of written and illustrated texts in around 30 endangered languages, many developed from stories told by community elders detailing ancestral knowledge and life, as well as everyday life and contemporary stories, primers, translations from English, instructional materials, memoirs and other genres.

These texts are useful as an academic resource for various domains, such as linguistics, anthropology, education, history, natural sciences, Indigenous knowledges, environmental studies, and visual arts. They are also (re)finding their place in the cultural lives of Aboriginal people living on traditional lands, now that there are only a handful of officially sanctioned bilingual programs. This presentation will demonstrate the archive and explore some of the ways researchers and communities in Australia and internationally can engage with this rich resource, ensuring its role as a 'living' archive.

  • Australian Government
  • The University of Queensland
  • Australian National University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Western Sydney University