Staff Projects

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Now showing 1 - 2 of 2
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    Digital Atlas of the Toponyms of Trinidad and Tobago (DATTT)
    (2019-03) Ferreira, Jo-Anne
    This project aims to document the toponyms of Trinidad and Tobago, via a series of customised Google maps. The project was conceived of a) in honour of the International Year of Indigenous Languages (IYIL) 2019, b) in response to a popular but erroneous map circulating on social media, and c) to graphically illustrate and further the research of scholars (such as Michael Anthony, Rawwida Baksh-Soodeen, Arie Boomert, Kemlin Laurence, CR Ottley, RW Thompson, Maureen Warner-Lewis, and Brinsley Samaroo) for academic and educational uses. While the diversity of the place names of Trinidad and Tobago is widely accepted, the actual depth of this diversity is not truly known. This project is expected to graphically account for and demonstrate the impact of a number of ethnolinguistic groups on Trinidad and Tobago's linguistic landscape, thus awakening a greater awareness of a fascinating phenomenon. In addition, the extent of intersecting and overlapping hybrid names, as well as little known etymologies will be uncovered (or where lost to history, documented or hypothesised). Underpinning this project is an appreciation and a sense of the importance of interdisciplinary approaches to make sense of a complex reality, often much taken for granted.
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    Caribbean Languages and Caribbean Linguistics
    (UWI Press, 2012) Ferreira, Jo-Anne S.
    Of the 1,000 plus languages of the Americas, 70 are in use across the 29 territories of the Caribbean, including both the archipelago and continental rimlands (Allsopp 1996). Linguistic situations of the Caribbean are complex, with language users managing an interface between and among a variety of heritage languages, each with its own social status, and some with both national and official status. Linguistic groupings include indigenous Amerindian languages, European languages, creole languages, sign languages (indigenous and foreign), and immigrant languages of various origins, including religious languages. With regard to European languages and creole languages, the relationships are varied, intense and often appear to be problematic, especially where they meet in the arena of formal education. In addition to the complexity of the living languages, their varieties and the often overlapping communities of practice to which their users (speakers and signers) belong, there are a number of heritage languages in various stages of obsolescence. Some are almost totally extinct, and some moribund, with few, if any, young native language users. Caribbean(ist) linguists have been engaged in the analysis and documentation of these languages and language situations for several decades, many pioneering work in hitherto neglected areas. These linguistics studies have an immediate application to formal education, language and language education policies, sustainable and ongoing language and culture development, communication, issues of identity, heritage and ethnicity, nation-building, linguistic rights and discrimination and language revitalisation. To understand human language as an integral and inseparable part of human culture is to begin to understand human and issues of social and cultural identity. This is the work of linguists in the Caribbean and beyond. *****ERRATA***** (missing from published version on *Table 9.1 Amerindian Languages of Belize and the Guyanas, under Carib, page 133): *Akurio *Sikiana and *Trió