Colonization has had a tremendous impact on Indigenous languages. In many cases, it has resulted in a decrease in the numbers of native language speakers, and, in some instances, language extinction. This unit will help students understand why and how colonial efforts targeted language in attempts to eradicate Indigenous cultures. Students will also learn about efforts to reinstate endangered languages and the effects of colonization on language politics today.
Fenigsen, Janina. 2007. “From Apartheid to Incorporation: The Emergence and Transformations of Modern Language Community in Barbados, West Indies.” Pragmatics 17 (2): 231–261
Irvine, Judith T. 2008. “Subjected Words: African Linguistics and the Colonial Encounter.” Language and Communication 28 (4): 323–343.
Article: The Nation’s “Language Is a ‘War Zone’”
Eshe Lewis (2020)