On first reading Les Mots, it was as much of a surprise to note that references to religion and belief were both so frequent and so central to Sartre's unconventional autobiography as it was to learn that the famous Christian missionary Albert Schweitzer was his cousin. Further readings and analyses have reinforced my view that the language of belief plays a critical part in the text. These questions of belief and the references to religion that appear frequently in Les Mots have received less attention. It could be said that these references are merely illustrative of Sartre's attempt to explain himself to himself and to us, and function as any metaphor would. But such a suggestion would fail to account for the many references to religion and belief and to explain why they are so tightly interlinked. We will argue that closer attention to these subjects provides significant insight into the work. Sartre, it would appear, uses a religious template, rather than an existentialist or a Marxist one, to understand his life's project, his past and his present. We will therefore investigate the nature of this use of the language of belief as a religious template and evaluate its significance.
The article provides an overview of recent initiatives spearheaded by indigenous peoples in the Sakha Republic (Yakutia) that seek to improve the existing language policy put forth by the state government. Although there has been some research conducted on the activities of public organizations and associations of indigenous peoples in the region, more must be done to better understand activities specifically related to language policy. The article presents a history of indigenous and minority organizing in the republic since the end of the Soviet era, with special attention paid to the campaigns regarding the status of native language and its presence within the educational sphere. It then analyzes the results of a 2011 sociological study regarding people’s beliefs about responsibility for native language maintenance and revitalization.
This article explores the language attitudes of young residents of the Republic of Buriatiia toward two official languages in the region, Buriat and Russian. The article also contributes to the research methodology on language attitudes and use, notably by employing a verbal guise technique in a psychosociolinguistic experiment. In the experiment, both phonetically authentic (native, accent-free) and inauthentic (non-native, phonetically nonstandard) Buriat and Russian voices are evaluated by representatives of both nationalities based on two distinct lines: achievement and character traits. The experiment revealed positive attitudes toward native speaking and perception of non-native speaking as a deviation from the norm that are indicative of the unconscious “one ethnicity—one language” idea in the mass consciousness of the youth in Buriatiia along with the strategies of tolerance and ethnocentrism.
Alexander D. King
This project is titled “Koryak Ethnopoetics: Stories from Herders and Maritime Villagers” and emerges from my long interest in oral narratives in Koryak. It is funded by a grant from the Endangered Language Documentation Project (ELDP).1 The general goal of the project is to document spoken Koryak, especially oral narratives, primarily by speakers of less studied dialects. Koryak varies quite a bit from one dialect to another, and this project will provide a better set of linguistic data for Koryak. In my previous fieldwork, I found that many people wanted me to share the realities of their traditions, their stories, their lives with the wider world. More Koryaks are concerned about having their name spelled correctly in my publications than being anonymous. This documentation project is ultimately about addressing the inequalities of voice as discussed by Dell Hymes (1996). I have found it rare that my academic research makes a real difference in people’s lives. However, that is exactly the feeling I got when talking to Koryaks about our documentation project in northern Kamchatka; it is work that makes a difference for many people in Kamchatka. Indigenous Kamchatkans face great struggles to have their voices heard but soon there will be an open and easily accessible archive of nearly 200 hours of what they want to say. The majority of participants we recorded had the goal of putting their native born language on record. They wanted their language, the language that their grandchildren don’t understand, recorded so that someone, anyone could hear it even after their death. Most people we approached had a clear sense of legacy. A few treasured the opportunity to speak with with my research partner, who was an excellent conversational partner in Koryak and is honestly interested in what the elder had to say.
In 1991 I published an annotated bibliography of English language publications about Siberia and the Russian Far East. The following list is the first part of a chronological extension of the original bibliography to the present. However, because of space and time considerations, there will be no annotations; items to do with foreign relations and shorter than six pages are usually omitted. I would be very grateful for information about any items which have escaped my attention, so that they can be included in a subsequent retrospective section.
Reading the Graphs of Madame Pégard
Hélène Périvier and Rebecca Rogers
This article considers how women adopted a “scientific” statistical language at the end of the nineteenth century to draw attention to their role in the moral and social economy. It explores in particular the messages contained in La Statistique générale de la femme française, a series of eighteen murals that the moderate feminist Marie Pégard sent for exhibition at the Woman’s Building at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893. The article begins by considering the place statistics held in France in the final decades of the century within the context of universal exhibitions. It then examines Pégard’s choice of quantified categories of social analysis to convey a sustained argument about the comparative weight of women in a modernizing French economy. The article seeks to understand how contemporaries read and interpreted the graphs, and how this mode of rendering visible the issue of women’s work played into the politics of an emerging feminist movement.
The Caucasus was a zone of encounters for centuries, generating images of regional cosmopolitanism in the past. This vision creates expectations for the present, when it is included in the wider discussion about the meanings of cosmopolitanism today, its relation to modern geopolitics, and issues of social and political co-existence and recognition. This essay focuses on two different photographs that belong to different Greek families in Georgia. These photographs represent two different historical experiences of migration and pinpoint different understandings of cosmopolitanism. However, they both seem to stem from specific discourses about diasporas and their cosmopolitan character. The role of language in the construction of these discourses is fundamental. The essay compares photographic representations of the 'Greek Diaspora' in order to trace the perceptions of cosmopolitanism they generate, the cultural capital they carry, and its outcome in relation to Greek diaspora politics.
This article analyzes the semantic structure of domestic deer herd names in Alutor, a Kamchatkan language spoken by a semisettled group of Koryaks. The structure of the lexicon shows a variety of names of herds and parts of herds according to sex and age of a deer and the relative location of a deer in the herd, and of names of harnesses and parts of harnesses. Herd names and names of parts of reindeer harnesses represent composite lexemes consisting of simple nouns. All Alutor names in the present article are explained in their contexts, as well as in the hierarchical organization of the hypero-hyponymic groups in which synonym relations and relations of variation are being observed.
Holly Hansen-Thomas and Ludovic A. Sourdot
This article examines the severe educational crisis in the United States regarding the ability of institutions of higher education to recruit, retain and appropriately serve Latin@ English Language Learners (ELLs). In particular, it highlights the plight of undocumented ELLs who attend U.S. high schools and universities, but cannot work upon leaving higher education. This case study aims to describe the story, challenges and successes of one undocumented college graduate. In this study the authors show how cracks in the academic pipeline negatively affect Latin@ ELLs. This article offers specific recommendations to mend these cracks and improve the education opportunities of immigrant ELLs.
Market English, Biopower, and the World Bank
J. Paul Narkunas
In 1997, the World Bank Group1 published in English one of its many country studies, entitled Vietnam: Education Financing. Its goal was to measure ‘what changes in educational policies will ensure that students who pass through the system today will acquire the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed for Vietnam to complete the transition successfully from a planned to a market economy’(World Bank 1997: xiii). Skills, knowledge, and attitude designate the successfully ‘educated’ Vietnamese national subjects for the bank. The educational ‘system’ performs, therefore, a disciplinary function by using the technologies of the nation state to cultivate productive humans—measured by technical expertise and computer and business skills—for transnational companies who do business in the region.