Moira Saltzman recently gave a talk on Jejueo, an endangered South Korean language, at Mango Languages in Farmington Hills. Mango Languages develops online curriculum for second language acquisition. They provide curriculum for over 70 languages to Michigan libraries, schools, government offices and individuals.
The focus of the talk was Jejueo language revitalization, and Moira gave an overview of her ongoing development of the Jejueo Talking Dictionary. The Jejueo Talking Dictionary is an online multimedia database of Jejueo, a critically endangered language spoken by 5,000-10,000 people on Jeju Island, South Korea. Under contact pressure from Korean, Jejueo is undergoing rapid attrition and all fluent speakers of Jejueo are now over 75 years old. Moira and a team of Jeju community members are currently building a web-based talking dictionary of Jejueo along with an application for Android devices. The Jejueo talking dictionary will compile existing video corpora of Jejueo songs, conversational genres and regional mythology into a multimedia database, supplemented by original annotated video recordings of natural language use. Lexemes and definitions will be accompanied by audio files of their pronunciation and occasional photos for items native to Jeju. The Jejueo talking dictionary will serve as a tool for language acquisition in Jejueo immersion programs in schools, as well as a repository for songs, stories and archaic ceremonial speech.
Moira and Mango Languages are currently collaborating on the development of a multimedia talking dictionary template that can accommodate the Jejueo Talking Dictionary as well as other language documentation projects