Indigenous Languages Institute Sydney 2008 PDF Print E-mail
The keynote speakers set the tone of the forum with their stories of dignity and perseverance:

Dana Ober, a Torres Strait Islander from Saibai Island, talked about the loss of his language, Kalaw Kawaw Ya. Although there are still fluent speakers and the language is in day-to-day use, the younger generation are turning away from Kalaw Kawaw Ya in favor of Yumplatok, a Torres Strait Creole, and English. He has been trying to reinvigorate Kalaw Kawaw Ya amongst the young people of Saibai Island.

Indigenous Languages Institute Sydney 2008
Lester Coyne, FATSIL member
Warren Mundine is a passionate advocate for Indigenous languages and education. He explained how important it is for Indigenous people to be proud of themselves and their culture, and the strong role that learning ones own language plays in that pride, selfesteem and sense of identity.

Stan Grant gave a fascinating talk in two parts; first about the brutal destruction of the Wiradjuri people and their language by the white colonisers, then followed up with a pragmatic, how-to guide to rebuilding language. Stan is a giant in Indigenous language reclamation and his presentation really bought everyone together.

For a full list of the other 33 presentations go to to www.lingfest.arts.usyd.edu.au and follow the links.