Speaking my Language and Being Beautiful – Decolonizing Indigenous Language Education in the Ryukyus with a Special Reference to Sámi Language Revitalization
Hammine, Madoka (2020)
Julkaisun pysyvä osoite on
The purposes of this research were to investigate the situations of indigenous language teaching and learning and facilitate better ways to embrace multilingualism in indigenous language communities. The specific aims of the study were (1) to investigate two example cases of indigenous language groups in Japan and Finland, (2) to examine voices and experiences of indigenous language teachers and learners and (3) to create possible suggestions for indigenous language teacher education from the two case studies. Three themes were used as the main theoretical frameworks: indigenous teacher identity, language and indigenous education. This study used a participatory, community-based research methodology within a framework of an Indigenous research methodology. The data for this study were collected from two ethnographic fieldworks—conducted in indigenous language communities of both Finland and Japan—through classroom observation, field notes, video recordings, interviews (group, pair and individual), policy documents and linguistic landscape documentation. Altogether, the study involved teachers, new speakers (language learners) and traditional speakers of indigenous languages. In the first sub-study, ten teachers of Sámi languages in Finland were interviewed to find out their approaches and experiences of teaching indigenous languages. The second sub-study examined twelve teachers of the Yaeyama language in the Yaeyama community, new speakers and traditional speakers of the language. The third-sub study of this research focused on the history of indigenous language education in Japan, exploring identity negotiations of Ryukyuan people and their linguistic rights to education. The principal result of this study showed that there is a need to decolonise language education from within. This, in turn, indicated that lack of confidence and self-esteem as teachers (language attitudes), unconscious richness of indigenous language speakers (language practice) and invisible language policy (language management) were the components that needed to be addressed in order to facilitate indigenous language education. This research suggested a new model of decolonising language education from within, which could be implemented in other indigenous language contexts around the world for individuals to be able to speak their language and be “beautiful” at the same time.
- Väitöskirjat