William A. Douglass Chair focuses on revitalization of Basque and support for indigenous languages

Euskara. Kultura. Mundura.

2019-10-25

A new edition of the William Douglass Chair will be held at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst on October 28 and 29. Linguistics expert Ane Ortega Etcheverry has been invited as the guest speaker to present two conferences (on the 28th and the 29th). The talks will centre on strategies for revitalizing the use of Basque and supporting indigenous languages, respectively.

A new edition of the William Douglass Chair will be held at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst on October 28 and 29. Linguistics expert Ane Ortega Etcheverry has been invited as the guest speaker to present two conferences (on the 28th and the 29th). The talks will centre on strategies for revitalizing the use of Basque and supporting indigenous languages, respectively.

Ane Ortega Etcheverry is a lecturer at Begoñako Andra Mari, a university-level College of Education. She also has a B.A. in Spanish Philology, an M.A. in Translation and a Ph.D. in Sociolinguistics, and has focused her career mainly on the study of minority languages. She is a member of ELEBILAB, the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) research group that studies Basque bilingualism and belongs to the UNESCO Chair in World Language Heritage, where she has developed a number of projects.

This year´s William Douglass Chair will feature two main topics. On Monday, October 28, Ortega will deliver an open conference at the university entitled “Promoting New Speakers of Basque: Design, Benefits and Challenges of an Action Research Approach” where she will present and explain the methodology, observations and challenges of a collaborative study carried out by a group of university students to promote the use of the Basque language.

On October 29, Ortega will give a close seminar to a group of up to twenty M.A. and Ph.D. students. Coinciding with the International Year of Indigenous Languages, at this event, she will discuss the challenges minority languages face in order to survive, and describe the eight years she spent working with the Nasa indigenous people of Colombia on the revitalization of the Yuwe language.

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