ERIC Number: EJ1075339
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
Finding a Way into a Family of Tone Languages: The Story and Methods of the Chatino Language Documentation Project
Cruz, Emily; Woodbury, Anthony C.
Language Documentation & Conservation, v8 p490-524 2014
We give a narrative description of our ten-year path into the elaborate tonal systems of the Chatino languages (Otomanguean; Oaxaca, Mexico), and of some of the methods we have used and recommend, illustrated with specific examples. The work, ongoing at the time of writing, began when one of us (Cruz), a native speaker of San Juan Quiahije Chatino, entered the University of Texas at Austin as a Ph.D. student and formed, together with the other of us (Woodbury), a professor there, the Chatino Language Documentation Project, ultimately incorporating five other Ph.D. students and two other senior researchers. We argue for the importance of an interplay among speaker and non-speaker perspectives over the long course of work; a mix of introspection, hypothesis-testing, natural speech recording, transcription, translation, grammatical analysis, and dictionary-making as research methods and activities; an emphasis on community training as an active research context; the simultaneous study of many varieties within a close-knit language family to leverage progress; and the use of historical-comparative methods to get to know tonal systems and the roles they play at a deeper level.
Descriptors: American Indian Languages, Tone Languages, Documentation, Language Research, Research Projects, Research Methodology, Foreign Countries
National Foreign Language Resources Center at University of Hawaii. Department of Linguistics, UHM Moore Hall 569, 1890 East-West Road, Honolulu, HI 96822. Fax: 808-956-9166; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://nflrc.hawaii.edu/ldc/
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Mexico