The ELRC's student assistants did fabulous work this term, digitizing hundreds of documents for the DNE Word-File Digitization Project. Thanks to their efforts (and to work done by student assistants in previous semesters), 21 of the Centre's 75 word-file drawers have been completely digitized, and the contents of another 14 have been partially digitized. The ELRC would like to thank all of the students who worked here this term: Auditee Ameen, Melanie Hurley, Rebecca Kalombo, Rebecca Lewis, Matthew Lidstone, Jane Manuel , Nicole Penney, Renee Sanson, and Brandi Snow. We hope you have a Happy New Year and enjoy the well-deserved winter break!
The ELRC today launched Twig: A blog about the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (DNE) and its word-files.
Alongside discussing the published DNE, Twig also examines the research materials that went into the dictionary's creation. These are the more than 100,000 index cards and paper slips that the dictionary’s editors began compiling in the 1950s and today comprise the ELRC’s DNE Collection. Each word-file contains a local word in its actual usage – whether from a printed source or an interview – or a commentary on a word by the dictionary’s editors and contributors. The word-files have not been published or made widely available to the public before now.
Two senses exist for twig in the word-files: the first is ‘a small drink’ and the second is ‘to catch the meaning’. The first sense appears in the dictionary, but the second does not – the editors considered it too widespread for inclusion. Twig, however, is a fitting title for a blog that investigates not only the DNE, but its supporting word-files.
The summer term has ended and everyone at the ELRC is saying a sad goodbye to the wonderful students who worked here during the last few months. Meaghan Malone did fabulous work for DANL: The Online Dialect Atlas of Newfoundland and Labrador English, while a troop of student assistants worked for the DNE Word-File Digitization Project this summer. They were: Catherine Burgess, Joelle Carey, Manjot Gill, Melanie Hurley, Jane Manuel, Nicole Penney, Suzanne Power, Renee Sanson, and Brandi Snow. Thanks to their work, and that done by student assistants in previous semesters, 18 of the Centre's 75 word-file boxes have been completely digitized and 16 are in progress. We at the ELRC would like to thank all the students for their great work and wish them the best of luck with their future studies!
Dr. Philip Hiscock and Dr. Sandra Clarke were guests on Crosstalk today, which is part of CBC's Radio Noon. They discussed unique Newfoundland and Labrador words with host Ramona Dearing and answered questions from the many listeners who phoned in. Listen to the show here.
Dr. Sandra Clarke spoke at the Newfoundland Historical Society's AGM as part of its George Story Lecture Series. Her talk was entitled "Tracing our linguistic roots: Mapping regional diversity in Newfoundland and Labrador English". Her focus was DANL (the Dialect Atlas of Newfoundland and Labrador), the interactive atlas of regional English that will soon be placed online for public access. This talk, which was enthusiastically received by a near-capacity audience, used many examples to illustrate the chief regional dialect patterns that emerge from the atlas data, and the insights that these provide into the province's linguistic history and settler origins.
CBC's Ted Blades sat down to speak with Dr. Sandra Clarke about her upcoming talk to the Newfoundland History Society about the Dialect Atlas of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Researchers with the ELRC, along with the QE II Library, published Howley’s Reminiscences, which constitutes Memorial University's first original e-publication. J.P. Howley was the director of the Geological Survey of Newfoundland from 1868 to 1911 and spent more than 40 years exploring and surveying the interior and coastline of the island. Reminiscences is based on diaries and notebooks Howley wrote during these years. It is a key memoir detailing the early exploration and mapping of Newfoundland. The e-book was edited by William J. Kirwin and Patrick A. O’Flaherty, with the assistance of Robert C. Hollett.
Read Janet Harron’s coverage of the launch for today.mun.ca here.
February 2010 saw the publication of Newfoundland and Labrador English, written by ELRC Management Committee member Sandra Clarke. This volume, published by Edinburgh University Press, is the first to provide a general introduction to the English of this province. It includes accessible descriptions of the pronunciation, grammatical, and lexical features of local English varieties, along with an account of the province's extensive linguistic variation in terms of historical, regional, and social factors. It also contains language samples from both traditional and contemporary speakers (with accompanying online sound files), plus an overview of published work from earlier centuries to the present. It is available locally at Memorial University Bookstore, or may be ordered online from Columbia University Press.
Jenny Higgins joined the ELRC today as its new Centre Manager. Alongside running the day-to-day operations of the ELRC, the Centre Manager will oversee the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (DNE) word-file digitization project and supervise the work of student researchers engaged in the project. The project's goal is to digitize the more than 100,000 word-files that went into the creation of the DNE and to make the data available to interested researchers. Digitization will also help to preserve the DNE's primary and secondary source records. Before coming to the ELRC, Jenny worked for the Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Web Site at MUN's Maritime History Archive.
Sandra Clarke and Philip Hiscock will be on CBC Radio Noon Crosstalk this month to talk about Newfoundland and Labrador English.