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Macquarie Dictionary update | Macquarie, Dictionary, Language, Discussion, Aboriginal, Would, English, Taking | FATSILC, Fed. Aboriginal Torres Strait Island Languages and Culture
Macquarie Dictionary update PDF Print E-mail

Below is a copy of a letter which Susan Butler, Executive Editor of the Macquarie Dictionary has asked be brought to the attention of linguists and language workers.

Macquarie Dictionary wishes to update its coverage of Aboriginal English for the third edition of the dictionary to be published late 1997.


We would like to enlist the support. of linguists and language workers at all the Language Centres to do this. We realise that. Aboriginal English is not just. on all-encompassing variety. but in fact a catch-all name for a number of dialects. and that the lexical items in which we have particular interest turn up in different parts of the country.

We also realise that the Language Centres have limited resources - some are very stretched indeed. but we would be grateful for any assistance that you could offer.

The way we would like to organise this project so that everyone can have input is to set up a special site as part of MacquarieNet. the Macquarie Dictionary Reference site to be launched on the World - Wide Web in July this year.

The Aboriginal English discussion group will be chaired by Prudy McLaughlin from the Language Centre at Katherine. Prudy will start the discussion each fortnight by taking a semantic theme and laying out for consideration all lexical items relating to that theme.

There will be processes established for entering new data, commenting on existing data, and discussion. After each fortnight Prudy will archive the discussion file and edit the list of lexical items.

I am conscious of the difficulties that some people will have in taking part in a discussion on the Internet. Essentially what is needed is a computer, a modem, software (like Netscape) and an Internet Service Provider.

For those who do not already have access or who cannot arrange access to the Web, the solution may be to supply each Language Centre with a printout of the discussion and the cumulative list each fortnight. for comment and additional material.

If we find that we can gather a lot of material in this way we may well look at a book on Aboriginal English to match our Macquarie Aboriginal Words Book. But initially the focus will be on Material for the third edition.

If you are interested in taking part in this project, please let me know. I would be grateful if you could indicate whether your participation will be on-line or on paper. I look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely.
Susan Butler
Executive Editor Macquarie Dictionary

Postal address
Macquarie Dictionary,
Macquarie University, N.S.W. 2109
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Phone: 02 8509800
Fax: 02 888 2984