Inuit slam TV channel's language policy

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Mon Mar 7 16:08:33 UTC 2005


   Inuit slam TV channel's language policy
   Last Updated: Mar 4 2005 12:32 PM MST

   IQALUIT - Prominent Nunavummiut are criticizing a popular television
   broadcaster for a new policy they say damages the Inuktitut language.
   The policy of the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
   requires films in an aboriginal language be dubbed in
   English or French.

   Among the critics of the move are the people behind the
   film Atanarjuat: the Fast Runner.
   Norman Cohn of Igloolik Isuma Productions says
   television stations in 20 countries are airing Atanarjuat in
   Inuktitut, with subtitles in English or French.

   So he's furious that Isuma will now have to provide
   English-language versions of Isuma's future films to get
   on APTN.
   "The idea that the Aboriginal television network should be
   the first network on Earth that actually requires us to provide dubbed
   versions  we think that that's sort of ridiculous and kind of sad."

   Nunavut's minister of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth is also
   denouncing APTN's policy.  Louis Tapardjuk says at a time when
   aboriginal languages are struggling to survive in most of Canada, the
   policy doesn't make sense.

   "Any channel that you turn on the dial on TV you don't pick up any other
   languages except English and French, and APTN is the only station that
   our unilingual Inuit in Nunavut can understand," he says.

   "This new policy is a step backwards."  Tapardjuk is calling on all
members of Nunavut's legislative assembly to voice their opposition to the
new film policy.   APTN has not yet returned calls.

   Copyright  2005 Canadian Broadcasting Corporation - All Rights Reserved

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