18 March 2016

#tokfriday: Memory, Language, and Shared Knowledge

The RLS

"Throughout the United States, many Native American languages are struggling to survive. According to Unesco, more than 130 of these languages are currently at risk, with 74 languages considered 'critically endangered.'" Marie Wilcox is the last fluent speaker of an almost extinct Native American language called Wukchumni. Today less than 200 Wukchumni remain. Marie was born on Thanksgiving day, 1933, and grew up listening to her grandparents speak Wukchumni. She started relearning Wukchumni recently and began writing down the language that she remembered from her grandparents. Her story is  a powerful example of how memory and language can create new shared understandings of who we are and where we come from.


The KQ

1st Order Claim: Marie's memory of her native language will shape the knowledge of those around her.
2nd Order Claim: Memory and language can create new shared knowledge.


Other TOK Links:

Indigenous Knowledge, Emotion, Human Sciences, History,


The Short Article and Video

Who Speaks Wukchumni? from The New York Times - Video on Vimeo.

‘Who Speaks Wukchumni?’


Related Videos/Articles

Wade Davis: Dreams from Endangered Cultures


Does Language Shape How You Think?
http://nyti.ms/18HWiTR

When languages die, ecosystems often die with them

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