Language Documentation and Archiving
Language documentation is a fundamental part of our work here at MDWg. Data is initially collected by recording stories, teaching about country and nature, or other texts from senior community members. Sometimes, field trips to remote communities or places of cultural significance are organised in order to find the right information. Recordings made on these trips are then transcribed and translated.
A proper analysis of the grammar also requires a word-by-word translation and each single word is split up into further meaningful units. The development of a comprehensive descriptive grammar of Miriwoong is one of our goals. Community dictionaries for these languages were developed recently and are currently being used and reviewed by the Miriwoong and Gajirrabeng communities. In 2017, we published the first edition of the Miriwoong Public Dictionary.
Did you know that it can take over a week to analyse and process just 30 minutes of audio recording?