Chipewyan dictionary launch

Mar 30 2012

FORT RESOLUTION (March 30, 2012) – Elders stood proudly in the gymnasium of Deninu School with dozens of hardcover English/Chipewyan dictionaries on Monday, March 26.

Students addressed the crowd in Chipewyan during the launch, welcoming community members and thanking Elders for their contributions to the dictionary project.

“The Dene Suline (Chipewyan) language revitalization efforts are strong and with the release of this language resource, we are one step closer to ensuring the future of the Chipewyan language,” said Jackson Lafferty, Minister of Education, Culture and Employment. “Supporting language revitalization will strengthen our communities, ensuring our children grow up ‘strong like two people,’ ready to lead productive lives while retaining their heritage.”

For more than two years, Fort Resolution Elders worked tirelessly on this project, in partnership with the South Slave Divisional Education Council and the Yamozha Kue Society. The project also involved collaboration from dozens of community members, including several youth. This dictionary is a full-colour, 369-page resource documenting thousands of Chipewyan words, phrases and sentences, arranged both alphabetically and topically. It also includes a searchable CD with MP3 files linked to each word and phrase. Users can see the language and hear it as spoken by a fluent speaker.

“We are very proud of this dictionary,” said Tom Beaulieu, MLA for Tu Nedhe. “When we began, the Elders on the project had one condition: that they would work in the schools, so students could ask questions.  I’ve recently had students speaking with me in Chipewyan, which means that our efforts and approaches are working.  Our community members must be commended for taking on such a complex and important project.”

For more information, please contact:

Ashley Green
Public Affairs Officer
Education, Culture and Employment
Phone: (867) 920-3059