ELL: clarification about SIL from an external point o
akha at loxinfo.co.th
Fri Mar 19 12:11:09 UTC 1999
To: owner-endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
Reply-To: endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
*** EOOH ***
Return-Path: <owner-endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au>
X-Authentication-Warning: carmen.murdoch.edu.au: majodomo set sender to
owner-endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au using -f
Date: Fri, 19 Mar 1999 19:11:09 +0700
From: Matthew McDaniel <akha at loxinfo.co.th>
Organization: The Akha Heritage Foundation
To: endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
Subject: Re: ELL: clarification about SIL from an external point o
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii; x-mac-type="54455854";
Sender: owner-endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
Reply-To: endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
So there is some cross over on the boards, not exactly seperate orgnizations,
Or should I say this, does SIL ever do anthing that Wycliffe would not
If they are seperate organizations and this does not occur, what is the law of
averages on this?
The point being is that, possibly it can be proven that there is no real or
cosmetic connection of the board.
But is their philosophy any different?
Does the SIL philosophy appose how the evangelicals like those who started
University treat people like the Akha?
I do not know of ONE Akha village that the evangelicals have taken over in
Thailand where the traditional culture remains and I am compiling an
amount of evidence that the evangelicals are actively engaged in forbidding
culture if they want to "believe in Jesus". This of course is very cleverly
with much theological gymnastics. "Oh, if they want to believe in Jesus this
that will have to go".
This Americanization of the Akha and the destruction of their culture is what
I contend that destroying people's culture further increases their
and furthermore, what gives the evangelicals the right to do this?
The Evangelicals come to the Akha villages (and now with the year two thousand
Jesus's imminent return they are in a feeding frenzy, their work made easier
increased poverty due to the IMF engagement here) and tell them, "Hey, we got
of bucks, if you want some, you gotta dump your culture"
I think in the end, we will PROVE that the evangelicals in northern Thailand
engaged in the persistent and consistent destruction and suppressing of Akha
culture and in SPECIFIC abuses of their Indigenous Human Rights.
SIL and the Evangelicals may have their pet Akhas who they help.
But will it make up for the 80 girls that just one Evangelical organization,
supported with Church funds from America, have removed from their villages
the guise of protecting them from the possibility of going into prostitution.
People are opposed to this because they know what it means for the long term
possibilities of the Akha and their culture. That they can convince their
that it is good to do does not change the long term effects of this.
That is the most important connection that we are trying to point to.
Thankyou for pointing out your internal insight into the organization that you
have, possibly it helps clarify a few things.
tsc_msea at SIL.ORG wrote:
> I would like to address a couple of the issues about SIL that have
> arisen recently.
> First, I'd like to say that I am speaking as an individual member of
> SIL and not as an official spokesman. Also I can only speak to issues
> that I am aware of, and obviously I can't talk about what I don't
> Matthew McDaniel had some specific comments with implied questions
> that I feel I can respond to.
> 1. First Matthew said, "It is said that SIL and Wycliffe have the same
> They do not have the same board and are separate corporations. The
> Wycliffe board governs an international group of many national
> (non-western and western) organizations that relate to the sending
> groups and individuals in the various home countries. In contrast, the
> SIL board directs the language work in various other countries. The
> governing boards are not comprised of the same individuals although
> each board has a few members who participate in the meetings of the
> other board.
> SIL is composed of individual members who are volunteers, responsible
> for raising their own support. At the individual member level, there
> are people who join Wycliffe but who never join SIL. Other individual
> members join Wycliffe and then join SIL. There are also members of SIL
> who come from countries where there is no Wycliffe organization to
> join. Many who join SIL are linguists and do the work of linguistics,
> sociolinguistics, applied linguistics, literacy, etc. Others join SIL
> in order to support the work of those language workers.
> 2. Matthew also said, "It is said frequently that SIL was made up to
> take the heat off practices that Wycliffe was engaged in and present a
> secular face, all the while able to fade back and forth through the
> wall at will."
> SIL and Wycliffe were formed and then incorporated around the same
> time in the 1930's. From the beginning these organizations worked on
> different tasks in different locations with different audiences. SIL
> is an organization that supports linguistic work (descriptive and
> applied) in minority languages of the world and trains people in
> linguistics. I am a member of both organizations.
> 3. In addition Matthew said, "Maybe someone with specific information
> on this could reply and possible someone at upper management at SIL
> could either substantiate or discredit the statement in a book that
> SIL was organized for this reason and has the same board as Wycliffe,
> in which case they are not seperate."
> I'm not sure which book Matthew is talking about. Books have been
> written criticizing SIL and/or Wycliffe, and books have been written
> praising SIL and/or Wycliffe. Also both SIL and Wycliffe (separate
> publishers) have published books about their respective organizations
> or certain work that people who belong to the organization have
> undertaken. It is very easy to find statements of either a pro or con
> nature about either organization.
> It is not clear to me from the statement what `this reason' is, and in
> fact there are many reasons that individuals have found SIL to be the
> best available vehicle for them to do their language work and serve
> some minority people groups. I believe that SIL and Wycliffe were each
> organized to facilitate the particular work that each organization
> According to the last part of Matthew's statement, I take it that
> Matthew would be willing to agree that Wycliffe and SIL are separate
> since they in fact do not have the same board.
> A little note on which projects SIL attempts to help in. SIL has
> neither unlimited funds nor unlimited personnel. All of the personnel
> are volunteers. Each organization determines which projects in which
> areas it will place priority and which projects it will staff if
> personnel are available. In working in SE Asia, SIL has cooperated
> with various universities and other local organizations.
> In Northern Thailand, we have cooperated with Payap University in
> training linguists at the MA level, with students from Akha, Sgaw
> Karen, Pwo Karen, Rawang, Jingphaw, Jirel, Tamil, Hmong, Northern Thai
> and other language groups receiving training. We also have the Applied
> Linguistics Training Program, which holds workshops lasting from a few
> days to a month. There are a variety of foci for the workshops. But in
> the writers workshops, which focus on creating literature in the
> writers' various languages, writers from Akha, White Hmong, Blue
> Hmong, Lisu, Khmu, Rawang, Sgaw Karen, Black Lahu, Lahu Shi, So, Iu
> Mien, Lua and other language groups have participated. These programs
> seem at the moment to be good places for us to concentrate our limited
> So anyway, that's what I know about some of the issues in Matthew
> Thank you all for listening.
> Tom Tehan
> ______________________________ Reply Separator
> Subject: Re: ELL: clarification about SIL from an external point of v
> Author: akha at loxinfo.co.th at internet
> Date: 17-03-99 10:58 AM
> It is said that SIL and Wycliffe have the same board.
> It is said frequently that SIL was made up to take the heat off practices
> Wycliffe was engaged in and present a secular face, all the while able to
> back and forth through the wall at will.
> Maybe someone with specific information on this could reply and possible
> at upper management at SIL could either substantiate or discredit the
> in a book that SIL was organized for this reason and has the same board as
> Wycliffe, in which case they are not seperate.
> ... (snipped)
> Endangered-Languages-L Forum: endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
> Web pages http://carmen.murdoch.edu.au/lists/endangered-languages-l/
> Subscribe/unsubscribe and other commands: majordomo at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
The Akha Heritage Foundation
386/3 Sailom Joi Rd
Maesai, Chiangrai, 57130
Mobile Phone Number: Sometimes hard to reach while in Mountains.
01-881-9288 when in Thailand
66-1-881-9288 when out Thailand
mailto:akha at loxinfo.co.th
Donations by check or money order may be sent to:
The Akha Heritage Foundation
1586 Ewald Ave SE
Salem OR 97302
Donations by direct banking:
In the US can be transfered to:
Wells Fargo Bank
Akha Heritage Foundation
Acc. # 0081-889693
Keizer, Oregon, USA
Outside the US:
Matthew Duncan McDaniel
Bangkok Bank Ltd
Endangered-Languages-L Forum: endangered-languages-l at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
Web pages http://carmen.murdoch.edu.au/lists/endangered-languages-l/
Subscribe/unsubscribe and other commands: majordomo at carmen.murdoch.edu.au
More information about the Endangered-languages-l