Blackfoot Blogs and the Charm of Languages


Session Title:

  • ISEA Education Forum

Presentation Title:

  • Blackfoot Blogs and the Charm of Languages




  • Social media offer novel strategies for preserving endangered languages. The emergence of YouTube offers one platform to couple videography with the oral tradition to preserve features of the spoken word such as accent and cadence. Blogs and apps hold potential for sharing stories in aboriginal languages, but the critical mass required to keep a language vibrant often exceeds the number of native speakers. Therefore best the strategy may be to start sharing aboriginal languages with members of the general public to create the critical mass needed and to inject them with new energy. Starting the conversation will be difficult since there are purists who prefer a community centred approach despite the dwindling number of speakers. I will examine the status of this project and make the case for expanding the Blackfoot language beyond its cultural boundaries.