Linguists and Language Maintenance: Pasi²ka Languages in Manukau, New Zealand1 Melenaite Taumoefolau, Donna Starks, Karen Davis, and Allan Bell university of auckland, manukau institute of technology, and auckland university of technology Manukau City is the most language-rich area in New Zealand, yet it has to date not been the subject of any detailed sociolinguistic study. This paper reports on pilot work for a major project on the languages of Manukau, and addresses the question of whether linguists can contribute to language maintenance efforts. It consists of an analysis of New Zealand census data on language use in the area, supported by qualitative data collected from eight pilot interviews. The 1996 New Zealand census was the ²rst to contain a language question, and we show how this provides background information on language use and language shift in Manukau. The census results depict the use of both ethnic languages and English in the four main Pasi²ka communities--Samoan, Cook Islands, Tongan, and Niuean. Age grading of self-reported pro²ciency in the Pasi²ka languages indicates the differing degrees to which they are undergoing shift or maintaining their standing. Qualitative data gathered in interviews with community members provide some possible explanations of how these
Oceanic Linguistics – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Jun 1, 2002
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