Indigenous language documentation in Guernsey, Channel Islands

The Endangered Language Documentation Programme (ELDP) provides grants worldwide to for the linguistic documentation of endangered language and knowledge. Grantees create multimedia collection of endangered languages. These collections are preserved and made freely available through the Endangered Languages Archive (ELAR) housed at the library of SOAS University of London.

There are probably 2-300 (mainly elderly) fluent speakers of Dgernesiais, the indigenous language of Guernsey, Channel Islands, which is categorized by the 2009 UNESCO Atlas as 'severely endangered'. Due to former negative ideologies (which contributed to endangerment) Dgernesiais has no separate ISO-639 code but is listed under French (fra). Latitude: 49°26'N, Longitude: 2°35'W. A SOAS field trip in Spring 2009 recorded 50+ hours of native speakers, several in their 90's. Funding is sought to transcribe, annotate and analyse these data and to undertake further documentation, especially of the related language variety of Sark, thought to have only 20 speakers. Primary investigator: Julia Sallabank

Project Details


Location: Channel Islands, United Kingdom, Northern Europe, Europe Organiser(s): Endangered Languages Documentation Programme Project partner(s): SOAS, University of London Funder(s): Arcadia Funding received: £10,000.00 Commencement Date: 01/2005
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