Should Munanga learn Kriol?
Exploring attitudes to non-Indigenous acquisition of Kriol language in Ngukurr
Kriol, an English-lexifier contact language, has approximately 20,000 speakers across northern Australia. It is the primary language of the remote Aboriginal community of Ngukurr. Kriol is a contact language, incorporating features of English and traditional Indigenous languages. The language has been perceived both positively and negatively, although recent literature suggests a shift towards more favorable views. This paper investigates how community members in Ngukurr responded to the question of non-Indigenous residents (known locally as Munanga) learning Kriol. Interviews with local Indigenous residents showed positive attitudes to Kriol, with respondents providing a number of perceived benefits for outsiders learning the language. Our interviews provide empirical evidence for pride in the language, affirming a shift to more positive attitudes.
Keywords: Kriol, language attitudes, language acquisition, Indigenous Australian languages, contact languages
Published online: 26 July 2021
Angelo, D., & Schultze-Berndt, E.
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