LIN 5574 -Languages of the World Assignment # 1 Guidelines DUE WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 23, 2002 BACKGROUND PROFILE This is a very important assignment, because for this profile you will have to select a language and assess the data that will be available to you not only for Assignment # 1 but also for the further assignments that will allow you to construct a complete profile of your language. Once you have turned in Assignment # 1, you must continue with the same language throughout the term; so be prudent in your selection. Follow your interests in choosing a language, but do not choose a language that will not have sufficient resources available to you during the semester to provide a good language profile. You will need sources which provide information on your language's phonological system, morphological system (including case, number, agreement, tense/aspect, etc.), pronominal system, and word order. You are encouraged to be adventurous in your choice of language--e.g., choose an American Indian language, an African language, a Polynesian language, or some other "exotic" language. Include as much of the information below as your can; be as specific as possible. Do not simply answer the questions one-by-one, but frame your answers in the form of a report/ essay. (Reminder: All assignments must be neatly typed, double-spaced, no exceptions.) Restrictions on language selection One of the purposes of the five assignments in this course is to expand your language experience beyond the materials presented in this class and beyond your other language experience; for this reason. several restrictions are placed on the language selected for your project. Do not select a language which is profiled in either of your textbooks (Speakers or Status), or one which is a topic of a class reading. Do not choose a language you have ever used to fu1flll any language requirement. Do not choose a language you have ever studied, either formally or on your own. Do not choose your native language Do not choose any Indo-European language Information to be included in Assignment # 1 1. Geographical context Identify where the language is spoken (continent, country or countries, region). Is there more than one geographically distinct population of speakers? If so, which one will be your primary source of information? . What are the main regional dialects of the language? Which will be your primary source of information? 2. Historical context How many speakers does the language have? How viable is the language? Are most speakers monolingual? bilingual? Are only speakers of the older generation monolingual? What is the sociopolitical status of the language? Is it the/ an official language of a country or region? Is it the/a language of instruction in the school system? Does it have or lack social prestige? What is the range of contexts when the language is used? Is it used for formal speeches? Is it used only among friends or within the family? 3. Literary context Is the language a written language? If so, what kind of writing system is used? Give examples. Is there an established body of literature in the language? If so, when did the literature begin? What are considered the major works in that literature? 4. Sources A. Library -List all library sources that you think you will use (including, of course, the ones that you used for this assignment); identify those that look as if they will be particularly useful to you. B. FIU has a number of international students. You may want to try to find a native speaker of the language that you use for your language profile who will be willing to work with you. Perhaps you have an older relative who speaks a language you would like to work on. C. Other -Specify any other sources that will be available to you. Note well -All bibliographic information MUST be presented in a standard format such as Chicago, MLA. LSA. APA, etc. State which style manual you will be following, and FOLLOW IT .