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Preservation and Revitalization of Inuit Sign Language - Paige MacDougall, Sandy Kownak, James MacDougall & Clayton Ungungai

9:00 AM, Sunday 6 Oct 2019 (30 minutes)
The Inuit Sign Language (ISL) projects create materials representing the experiences of deaf Nunavummiut who use Inuit Sign Language. Stories reveal that widespread use of Inuit Sign Language (ISL) among extended family members and friends (who are hearing) enables for a high degree of deaf inclusion into regular social and cultural activities. We use video to record the life stories of deaf Nunavummiut which are available in Inuktitut, English and French with interpretation in Inuit Sign Language (ISL), American Sign Language (ASL), and Langue des Signes Québécoise (LSQ). We also present Inuit deaf life stories in illustrated booklets for use in early childhood education. While revitalizing the Inuit Sign Language, our materials provide a source for the reaffirmation of Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (Inuit Societal Values). Through long term engagement with deaf persons and their families in the three regions of Nunavut we also produce illustrated ISL flash cards, as well as interactive ISL language learning games. In connection with our ISL revitalization projects we are developing strategies to increase deaf Inuit research and training capacities. In this regard, we recently held an inclusive interactive workshop in the community of Rankin Inlet, Nunavut. Supported by the Social Science and Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) the workshop brought together deaf Nunavummiut and their families with services providers from the Departments of Health, Justice, Education, Social service and Employment. Policy recommendations emerging from this inclusive community based workshop align with the guidelines stipulated by the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and Nunavut Research Institute (NRI).
Nunavut Deaf Society (NDS)
Nunavut Deaf Society (NDS)
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