Documentation of Ifira-Mele and Emae, two Polynesian languages of Vanuatu
The language of Fakamae is spoken on the island of Emae in Shefa province, Vanuatu. Fakamae has approximately 400 speakers, amongst a small island population of around 800. These speakers are found mainly in the villages of Makatea and Tongamea, on the western side of the island. The language holds a significant position within the approximately 138 languages of Vanuatu, being one of only three Polynesian outlier languages in the country. Speakers of these languages arrived in Vanuatu from their eastern Polynesian homeland some time in the last millenium, unlike their neighbouring languages which developed within Vanuatu.Fakamae is threatened by a number of factors. The national language of Bislama is increasingly influential as a result of close contact with urban communities, and the more widely spoken Vanuatu languages of Namakir and Nakanamanga are also increasingly spoken on Emae.
This deposit will include contributions from Fakamae speakers on the island of Emae, and in the Vanuatu capital of Port Vila. Data collection will focus on the villages of Makatea and Tongamae in Emae, as these are the two key sites at which the Fakamae speaking community is strongest.
Language information A Polynesian Outlier spoken on the island of Emae, Vanuatu
Fakamae speakers are aware of the unique position their language holds within Vanuatu, and are proud of its Polynesian heritage. The community is eager to collaborate in the documentation process.
There are currently no bundles in this deposit, as data collection is due to begin in 2018. This deposit will include spontaneous speech and elicitation. The majority of the recordings will be in video format. Some of these recordings will be transcribed, translated and annotated to create a written corpus of the Fakamae language.
The data for this collection will be collected during the doctoral research of Amy Dewar. It will be collected over a three year period from 2018 to 2020.
The Fakamae language is referred to in literature as Emae or Mae, however speakers refer to their language as Fakamae.
Users of any part of the collection should acknowledge Amy Dewar as researcher. Users should also acknowledge the Endangered Languages Documentation Programme as the funder of the project. Individual speakers whose words and/or images are used should be acknowledged by name. Any other contributor who has collected, transcribed or translated the data or was involved in any other way should be acknowledged by name. All information on contributors is available in the metadata.