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Researching Dane-zaa in British Columbia

September 30, 2009

miller. 2009This past summer brought me back to beautiful British Columbia. This trip focused on two main projects. The first was to work with community members of the Doig River First Nation to translate stories and conversations we collected over the past year. The second was to collect similar narratives at the Halfway River First Nation, and begin translations of those. During the past three years, these sessions have brought together linguists, anthropologists, Dane-zaa chiefs, councilors, elders and other community members to discuss language endangerment, revitalization efforts and language policy. These stories and conversations I have collected will be used by the community members for language and cultural education. Thanks to my Canadian Studies FLAS fellowships, I have been able to take an active part in this ongoing project.

This project was supported, in part, by funding from the Center’s Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship Grant, US Department of Education, Office of International Education and Graduate Program Services.

Julia Miller is a doctoral candidate in Linguistics. She has received FLAS fellowships to study the endangered First Nations language of Dane-zaa, spoken in north-eastern British Columbia and north western Alberta, Canada since 2006.