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.
The Meakambut are semi-nomadic hunters and gatherers, numbering about 45, moving between rock shelters around their mountainous territory in East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea. As one of very few semi-nomadic groups in Melanesia, they are key for understanding the (socio)linguistic situation which would have prevailed before agriculture. Apart from basic word lists there has been no prior research on the language, and it is not even listed in Ethnologue. Using observational filming to supplement basic linguistic documentation, this project will provide audio-visual documentation and analysis of a variety of their speech practices, embedded in rich ethnographic data.
Primary investigator: Darja Hoenigman