Documenting the Languages of this Region
Peter Sasabule completed his BA in Literature/Language and Education in 2022, graduating as a double gold medallist in these subjects. Upon graduation, he was awarded a Summer Endangered Languages Project (ELP) Language Documentation Fellowship, a project that is managed by First Peoples’ Cultural Council and the Endangered Languages Catalogue/Endangered Languages Project (ELCat/ELP) team at University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa in coordination with the Governance Council. This gave him access to more advanced training in language documentation and enabled him to carry out a project in his own language community (Roviana, Solomon Islands), eliciting narratives such as this custom story. He then successfully secured a PSERI scholarship to complete his MA in Linguistics at USP, again working with his own language community.
Sandhya Kumari, an experienced English teacher, has followed her passion for her own culture and heritage by undertaking MA Linguistics research into variation between the Kiribati and Banaban dialects. This research is vital in developing an in-depth description of the Banaban dialect, which has not received much attention so far. Since minority groups and languages of the Pacific are under described, this research will fill a gap in the sociolinguistic studies of the Pacific Islands. Sandhya also personally believes that this research will provide a much clearer picture about her identity as a speaker of the Banaban dialect.