The Language Feed - March 14, 2006

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Tue Mar 14 16:47:20 UTC 2006

The Language Feed
March 14, 2006

This issue and archives can be read on the web at

Cool site of the week: Oddcast Text to Speech demo -
Thanks to Charley Rowe for this link!

Bridging cultural gaps
Houston Chronicle, March 10
Navjot Cheema, 17, is talking to his grandparents. He's reading holy
script. And he's explaining who he is to others on campus. For the first
time, the senior can do these things in a meaningful way, thanks to the
addition this year of Punjabi as a language elective at James Logan High
School, in the San Francisco area.

btw, its tuff to communicate wit ur kid
The News Courier, March 10
’s up, peeps. nuttin much wit me just wanted to say hey cus im bored.
btw did u c julies new haircut CUUUUTTTE! k…im done L8R If you can read
that paragraph, you are either a National Security Agency code breaker,
a Sanskrit translator or a 12-year-old girl.

Language Barrier
The College Times, March 09
Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas is waging a war. On February 28,
Thomas announced that he would file a lawsuit against the court in an
effort to end what he calls the county’s “separate DUI courts for
Spanish-speaking and Native American DUI felons.”

Immersed in a new language: Immersion classes at KB Elementary bring
different cultures together
Tahoe World, March 12
Imagine by the fifth grade, a student can achieve a high academic
standard in two languages, be bi-literate and bilingual, have developed
an advanced cognitive flexibility that carries through to all subjects,
an appreciation for another culture and outperform all other groups of

America in 'critical need' of Mandarin
Guardian Weekly, March 10
The US is being swept by a rush to learn Mandarin, the official form of
the language used in mainland China. From wealthy New York mothers
hiring Chinese nannies for their toddlers, to west coast parents
demanding classes from their local schools to a defence department
education project in Oregon.,,1727000,00.html

Language gap affects young Bosnians at school, home
St. Louis Post-Dispatch, March 8
Every Sunday, about a dozen young Bosnian children gather to rehearse a
play based on a popular Bosnian children's book, "Hedgehog's House." But
Emir Hadzisalihovic, 9, and the handful of other kids often recite their
lines from memory rather than reading from the script. They can't read
the words on the page - they're in Bosnian.

Language as a form of identity, language as a broadcasting right
The New Anatolian, March 12
If you're one of those who've followed with enthusiasm -- and some hope
-- the story of broadcasts in other languages than Turkish at a local
level, you might feel momentarily happy over the announcements in the
last few weeks that these broadcasts will be allowed this month. Don't
hold your breath.

Foreign-language ballots could lose legal underpinning
Seattle Times, March 13
When King County began offering ballots and voter pamphlets in Chinese
four years ago, it was as though someone switched a light on for Qiu
Feng Pang. Suddenly, confusing ballot initiatives made sense to the
74-year-old retiree, who emigrated from China in 1989 and became a U.S.
citizen seven years later.

Turkish Kurds seek language rights
Aljazeera, March 12
Turkey's Kurds have complained of police oppression and called for an
end to prejudice against their language as crucial steps towards ending
a 22-year-old conflict in the southeast of the country.

High demand for dual-language learning
Vail Daily, March 12
Half a dozen pre-schoolers buzzed around the bright kindergarten
classroom fascinated - as all children are - by someone else's toys.
They played dress up, cooked imaginary food and stacked blocks. Some
made new friends while others opted for solitary recreation.

Rediscovering natives' tongues
Dallas Morning News, March 12
In The New World, the recent movie about Jamestown, founded in 1607 as
the first permanent English settlement in North America, the paramount
Indian chief Powhatan asks Capt. John Smith where his people came from.
The sky? Responding to the question, translated by an Indian whose
smattering of English probably came indirectly from the earlier failed
Roanoke colony in North Carolina, Smith replies: "The sky? No. We come
from England, an island on the other side of the sea."

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