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Ownership and language change in Mutsun revival

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Title: Ownership and language change in Mutsun revival
Authors: Szoboszlai, Lajos
Keywords: Mutsun dialect
language change
language revitalization
language ownership
Issue Date: Dec 2015
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
Citation: Szoboszlai, Lajos. 2015. Ownership and language change in Mutsun revival. Language Documentation & Conservation 9. 268-291.
Abstract: Language change in the context of the revitalization of Native American languages merits further study. Sources of change have been traced to attrition in the language production of the last speakers, to problematic documentation, and to relearning strategies. This paper explores change at the relearning stage of revitalization in a case study of a Mutsun tribal member learning his language. Mutsun is a Costanoan language of coastal central California belonging to the Yok-Utian family. Analyses of psychological and intellectual mechanisms driving language change during relearning remain scant in the literature. This paper posits the sense of ownership as a factor enabling language change through the learning process. The Mutsun learner's sense of ownership is the driving force behind language change in this case study of Mutsun language revival. Data supporting this assertion include decisions made by the learner about language form, function, and usage. I propose that these decisions are evidence of a sense of linguistic ownership and political ownership felt by the learner and that these license language change.
Sponsor: National Foreign Language Resource Center
Pages/Duration: 24
ISSN: 1934-5275
Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International
Appears in Collections:Volume 09 : Language Documentation & Conservation

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