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Open Linguistics

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Theory and Praxis in Community Based Language Development: preliminary findings from applications of the Guide for Planning the Future of Our Language

David M. Eberhard
Published Online: 2017-09-02 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/opli-2017-0013


This study will provide a critique of preliminary results obtained from the application of the ‘Guide for Planning the Future of Our Language’ (Hanawalt, Varenkamp, Lahn, & Eberhard 2015) in minority speech communities. This recent methodological tool was developed to enable and empower minoritized language groups to do their own language planning and to control their own language development. The tool is based on a theoretical approach to community based language development known as the ‘Sustainable Use Model’, or the SUM (Lewis & Simons 2016). The paper will begin with a brief introduction to the theoretical framework of the SUM. Next it will describe the basic structure of the ‘Guide for Planning the Future of Our Language’, and then ‘follow along’ as it is applied in various communities and workshops with mother tongue speakers. These applications were conducted by the author and others in 84 languages in Brazil, Colombia, Croatia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Sao Tome e Principe, and Venezuela. This will be the first report of its kind on the broad applications of this rapidly growing methodology.

Keywords: Community Based Language Development; Sustainable Use Model; Guide for Planning the Future of Our Language


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About the article

Received: 2016-11-01

Accepted: 2017-07-19

Published Online: 2017-09-02

Published in Print: 2017-08-28

Citation Information: Open Linguistics, Volume 3, Issue 1, Pages 251–264, ISSN (Online) 2300-9969, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/opli-2017-0013.

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© 2017. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 License. BY-NC-ND 4.0

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