The New Speakers Blog

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New Speakers on the Red Carpet

Recently, the FilmG awards, otherwise known as the ‘Gaelic Oscars,’ were held in Glasgow. Although you might not see the likes of Meryl Streep or Brad Pitt there, in the world of Scottish Gaelic Film and TV, it is no less important. This year, two of the winning films in the Open Competition — Gàidheal Gu Luath and Cheating Our Language —  both centred on new speakers of Gaelic.

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Bilingual Child Migrants in a Multilingual Europe

Although European societies are becoming increasingly multilingual due to migration, and children are raised in increasingly multilingual environments, we still know very little about how bilingual and multilingual children develop and function linguistically. We also know little about the socio-economic factors and social attitudes, such as language prestige, shaping language use in migrant contexts. Thus, within Working Group 7 “Multilingual competence and new speaker varieties” we are organising a two-day workshop focusing on bilingual children from migrant families. In particular, it will be devoted to an examination of the bilingual child’s language development in the areas of phonology, lexis, morpho-syntax and discourse. We will also discuss the linguistic identities of migrant families and their impact on home language and literacy transmission practices in these families across Europe.

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Ag tacú le ‘nuachainteoirí’

(Joint post with John Walsh)

John Walsh and I are organizing a stakeholder event on Friday 14th October in Dublin. The meeting aims to provide an opportunity for discussion to groups that are promoting Irish outside the Gaeltacht and who have an interest in the structures that were created under the Gaeltacht Act and that are pertinent to new speakers. To that end we have invited representations of Irish Language Networks and groups interested in applying for status as Gaeltacht Service Towns to meet and identify and discuss the challenges and opportunities associated with this initiative.

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New Speakers and Brexit

[This post was published as a report in July 2016 as a reflection of the Migration and Asylum Roundtable at the Second Whole Action Conference in Hamburg]

Moving on from the COST Migration and Asylum Roundtable: New Speakers and Brexit

The discussions at the Roundtable were fascinating and this is also a thank you to all those who attended and participated actively in the discussions. I originally intended to write a summary on the Roundtable and a call for further discussions on the participation from COST members on constructing a co-ordinated response to migration and asylum issues. In ordinary circumstances I would give a socio-legal argument, and discuss how the intersection of positive law, language and social realities places refugees on the social margins. However, recent events have made me view our discussions in a slightly different light.

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Putting the social into speech processing

On July 11th, UCL will be hosting a small group of phoneticians with more than just their interest in exotic speech sounds in common.

A few years ago, Bronwen was approached by Gisela to supervise a PhD investigating sociophonetic variation in Galicia. Not quite knowing what she was getting into, Bronwen very enthusiastically agreed, thinking that this would be a great opportunity to combine her work on sociophonetics, specifically, accent variation, with her interest in second language learning. Little did she realize that she would soon be exploring a whole new literature, that of the New Speaker phenomenon.

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