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Languages of Italy Project
Founded in 2012 by Dr. Anastasia Riehl, Endangered Language Alliance Toronto (ELAT) aims to document endangered and under-described languages in the Greater Toronto Area and to support language-preservation efforts in a time of accelerated language loss. At ELAT, we video-record, transcribe, and translate interviews with speakers of minority languages.
I have been volunteering as a Project Assistant (Languages of Italy) with ELAT since 2015. This work has been extremely gratifying because I have been able to meet and connect with the Italian-Canadian community, to hear stories of migration, and to witness how Italian minority languages, often misleadingly labelled "dialects", play a pivotal role in family and social dynamics.
Working with ELAT has only strengthened my belief in the importance of linguistic and cultural diversity and my concern about the dangers of language loss on human societies.
This project also led to the academic publication "Documenting Italian Languages in Toronto" (Frascà and Riehl).
Info and recordings here: Endangered Language Alliance Italian Project
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