The Orphan Master's Son: Adam Johnson

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Event 30

Stories to Save Languages

Ka ngaro te reo, ka ngaro taua, pera i te ngaro o te moa. If the language is lost, man will be lost, as dead as the moa.

Storytelling is humankind’s unique evolutionary advantage. We pass down knowledge, history and memories through stories. However, it is estimated that every 40 days,

a language dies. And with the loss of a language follows the loss of its unique stories.

But many writers are taking deliberate action to platform and uplift diverse languages. Samoan comic artist Michel Mulipola uses graphic novels to amplify Samoan language and culture; Hong Kong writer Louise Law Lok-Man sees translation as a way for Cantonese writing to reach wider audiences; and award-winning author Shilo Kino (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Maniapoto) was inspired by her personal journey reclaiming te reo Māori to write a new novel.

In conversation with writer and translator Daniel Hahn, this panel will illuminate the power of literature to save languages, urging more publishers to give space for linguistically and culturally diverse stories.

Supported by Latin American CAPE.

Fri, 17 May 2024

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