From April 19 to 21, Barcelona and Vic will hold the First International Conference on Revitalization of Indigenous and Minoritized Languages. This summit is organized by the universities of Barcelona, Indiana Bloomington and Vic-Central de Catalunya, and it will gather 300 experts coming from more than a hundred universities.
Throughout lectures, boards, workshops and roundtables, the conference will tackle the diverse elements related to worldwide languages, ranging from the indigenous language in Latin America to Berber, Catalan or Basque. There will be three plenary sessions: “El català a la Catalunya del Nord avui: un cas de revernacularització?” by Joan Peytaví, professor at the University of Perpignan; “Revitalization: convince a community of the utility of their languages first” by Maya Khemlani David, from the University of Malaya, and “Beyond endangerment: The holistic benefits of indigenous language revitalization” given by Teresa McCarty, from the University California Los Angeles.
Language death was one of the dominant research topics at the turn of the century. Nowadays, more than a 90% languages are threatened, and more than the half is expected to disappear during the 21th century. The consequences of this loss for the involved communities and humanity defined a growing interest to understand this issue. This interest was redirected to the recovery of language heritage and both experts and numerous communities set up revitalization projects. This conference counts with members of indigenous communities and representatives of several bodies working on the revitalization of languages, apart from international distinguished experts.
The organizers of the meeting have started a collaboration with Arrels Foundation, an entity dedicated to the homeless, who created the conference bags. As a request from this foundation, during the first days of the event, the speakers are sharing the slogan “Ningú dormint al carrer” (No one sleeping in the streets) translated into lots of languages that will be present in the conference.