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Australian Indigenous HealthBulletin Alcohol and other drugs knowledge centre Yarning Places

Revival of the Barngarla language and the link to diabetes prevention

Date posted: 22 February 2017

A group of scientists have received more than $1 Million in funding to establish the relationship between language revival and wellbeing. Working with the Barngarla people of South Australia, the group hopes to prove that they can prevent illness through restoring cultural heritage. The multidisciplinary study hopes to change the way that governments all over the world, not just in Australia, approach health issues in Indigenous communities.

'The hypothesis is that language reclamation results in mental health empowerment,' said Professor Ghil’ad Zuckermann, Chair of Linguistics and Endangered Languages at the University of Adelaide.

According to Prof Zuckermann, the only related research that provided quantitative data about the relationship between language loss and youth suicide was undertaken in 2007 in Canada that studied tribes that had experienced severe language loss and presented more cases of youth suicide.

Source: National Indigenous Television Network (NITV)


Last updated: 22 February 2017
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