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.
All of the languages in this project are previously undescribed non-Austronesian languages spoken in the Alor archipelago in south-eastern Indonesia. Klon is spoken by approximately 5,000-6,000 people in the western part of Alor island, Abui by approximately 16,000 people in central Alor, and Teiwa by approximately 5,000 people in the eastern part of Pantar island.On the islands of Alor and Pantar there is a very high level of bilingualism in the local variety of Malay; local languages are generally afforded low status in their speech communities and are regarded as 'backward' by residents in town. In addition, in many parts of the region, including the speech communities in this study, children are learning the local variety of Malay as their first language and are unable to communicate in the local languages. The primary aim of the fieldwork is to collect more language data for Klon, Abui and Teiwa to add to the body of data collected in 2003 by the three researchers in the Linguistic Variation in Eastern Indonesia project. The main research aim of the project is to produce short grammars of Klon and Teiwa and a full reference grammar of Abui. Either as a part of the grammars or separately we will produce trilingual dictionaries (local language â€“ Indonesian â€“ English), which will be useful for the local speech communities as well as the worldwide linguistic community. We will also produce a collection of texts to be published locally for each language using both the national Indonesian language and English.
Primary investigator: Louise Baird