Cyclical Continuity and Multimodal Language Planning for Indigenous North America
AuthorBlu Wakpa, Makha
Indigenous Sign Language
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis dissertation initially reviews the literature on Indigenous language planning (LP) with an emphasis on orientations, dispositions, and their roles in Indigenous society. Token policies pertaining to Indigenous LP are often mistaken for resolving the social ailments that cause language shift--none of which result in systemic, institutional, or effective changes to programs revitalizing Indigenous languages. The author argues for a focus on sovereignty, early childhood development, teacher training, curriculum, assessment, immersion, economic sustainability, and Indigenous epistemologies. Ethnographic studies are an important aspect of LP. Oftentimes Indigenous nations have little documentation of their historical efforts to reverse language shift (RLS), leaving newcomers uninformed about the achievements of their RLS predecessors. Therefore the collection and documentation of Indigenous RLS projects can potentially prevent future language planners from recreating historical obstacles, while presenting new methods that anticipate reoccurring problems. This study overviews Lakota language (LL) status while focusing on shifting centre-periphery authentication and healing Historical Trauma by implementing cultural continuity for Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe (CRST). Much attention has been given to spoken lingua francas, but less has been given to signed lingua francas. The purpose of this research is to map distinct boundaries of Indigenous North America's signed lingua franca, emphasizing national boundaries and culture areas. Other goals include redirecting anthro-linguistic attention to the historically widespread eight dialects of Hand Talk and encouraging their hereditary signers to revitalize multimodal aspects of their respective cultures. Spoken language immersion is an effective method for RLS that usually incorporates multimodal instructional scaffolding through total physical response (TPR), and common gestures to mediate target language acquisition. However, spoken language immersion often overlooks sign language and its motor for ethnic gestures that can profoundly expand TPR's role to orchestrate holistic multimodal communication. North American Hand Talk (NAHT) is a sign language indigenous to the majority of North American Indigenous nations who are also attempting RLS among their spoken languages. Making NAHT the standard for multimodal RLS applications could increase target spoken language retention while redeveloping an Indigenous multimodal culture in North America.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Language, Reading & Culture