Diego Marani has written a novel which has the last speaker of a language as a key character. Vostyach is a Finno-Ugric language, believed to have vanished, until a Russian linguist finds a last speaker who has grown up in the gulag. Unfortunately, she reveals her discovery to an unscrupulous Finnish linguist whose cherished hypotheses about the linguistic history of Europe are threatened by this new data.
How far he is prepared to go to defend his theories, and what happens to these various characters, you can find out by reading the novel (no spoilers!) – but I will say that the last of the Vostyachs himself ends up not too badly and his language is being heard by many people (at least in some form) by the close of the book.
Marani does not really use linguistics a great deal in this novel – there is some rather dodgy phonetics in there, and he doesn’t go into any detail about either historical linguistics or language endangerment. It isn’t great literature either (I read it on an international flight, and that seemed about right) but it is all highly entertaining.
Monash academics draft working paper on ‘Women in Politics’
Monash Academics from the School of Social Sciences, Professor Jacqui True, Dr Swati Parashar and … Continue reading Monash academics draft working paper on ‘Women in Politics’
Joint PhD program offers global research opportunities for philosophy student
Thomas Ryan is the first Monash University student to study at the University of Warwick … Continue reading Joint PhD program offers global research opportunities for philosophy student
Bachelor of Global Studies to be launched this year
Monash Arts will be offering the Bachelor of Global Studies for the first time in … Continue reading Bachelor of Global Studies to be launched this year
Musical Symposium Hits High Note
The first international symposium on the Malay musical arts of the Riau Islands (also know as Kepri) to be held in Australia has been deemed a success. The Symposium was Hosted by Monash University and attracted more than 100 people to the first afternoon of papers and to the launch of the accompanying exhibition, which included performances of live music and theatre of the Riau Islands.
Ebola and the ethics question
Tolerating impoverished healthcare systems dramatically increases the risks associated with contagious disease, as the current … Continue reading Ebola and the ethics question
Death or Liberty concert and documentary commemorates rebels exiled to Australia
Since November, filming has been underway in Tasmania and Ireland for the television documentary Death or Liberty, the screen adaptation of the history of political rebels and radicals transported as convicts to Australia. The documentary is adapted from the book: Death or Liberty: Rebels and Radicals Transported to Australia 1788-1868, written by Dr Tony Moore from the school of Media, Film and Journalism.
The case of Peter Greste and notions of press freedom
By Dr Andrea Baker The imprisonment of the Australian journalist Peter Greste in Egypt received … Continue reading The case of Peter Greste and notions of press freedom
Overcoming the social barriers to climate consensus
by Ana-Maria Bliuc and Craig McGarty It can be tempting to think that people who disagree with … Continue reading Overcoming the social barriers to climate consensus
Bohemian Melbourne celebrates city’s history with film festival and lecture series
This summer, the State Library Victoria has showcased Melbourne’s vibrant bohemian history with an exhibition … Continue reading Bohemian Melbourne celebrates city’s history with film festival and lecture series
Australia, a place of belonging and pride – and some telltale fractures
by Andrew Markus Every year, come January 26, Australia Day revives the annual dialogue around notions … Continue reading Australia, a place of belonging and pride – and some telltale fractures
Chamber Recording of the Year 2014 awarded to Sellars and Fujimura
Dr Kenji Fujimura and Elizabeth Sellars awarded Limelight’s Chamber Recording of the Year for their … Continue reading Chamber Recording of the Year 2014 awarded to Sellars and Fujimura
And, like, she goes ‘yeah, nah’: terminating our bad speech habits
by Baden Eunson Australians aren’t well known for their articulation. From Kath and Kim to … Continue reading And, like, she goes ‘yeah, nah’: terminating our bad speech habits