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Grant number: PD-255911-17

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PD-255911-17

Konkow Wailaki Maidu Indian Cultural Preservation Association (Oroville, CA 95965-4102)
Lewis Lawyer (Project Director: 09/26/2016 to present)

Resources for the Konkow Language

Creation of a linguistic database for Konkow, a language of northern California with no native speakers remaining, and preparation of a vocabulary, analyzed texts, and grammatical descriptions, as resources for teaching the language to second-language learners.

(edited by staff) Konkow (ISO 639-3 code: mjd), also known as Northwestern Maidu, Concow, or Koyoongk’awi, is an indigenous language of northern California and a member of the Maiduan language family. Konkow no longer has any first-language speakers, but there is a growing body of second-language learners with an increasing amount of fluency, as a result of community revitalization projects. The Konkow language has no published dictionary, no published texts, and there is a general lack of accessible reference material.  While a description of Konkow was undertaken by Russell Ultan for his 1967 dissertation (unpublished), its dense style makes it challenging to interpret, especially for community members untrained in linguistic theory.  This project is a collaboration between an academically trained linguist and a community member with years of experience in Konkow language and culture revitalization.  Its goals are: (1) to create some basic reference materials for the language and (2) to increase access to archival Konkow language materials. The applicant will catalog and digitize a collection of archival material and include it in a searchable, online database, which will be made available as an Open Language Archives Community (OLAC) resource at language-archives.org and at the California Language Archive.  Drawing on the archival materials and Ultan’s analysis, the project will produce a short Konkow vocabulary, two fully analyzed texts, and a series of pedagogically oriented grammatical descriptions.

Project fields:

Program:
Documenting Endangered Languages - Preservation

Division:
Preservation and Access

Total amounts:
$114,293 (approved)
$114,293 (awarded)

Grant period:
10/1/2017 – 4/30/2019