RUIL Public Lecture: about our presenters

On Tuesday 30 May, 6-7pm, RUIL will hold our next free public lecture, presented by Greg Dickson and Grant Thompson: 'Something lost, something found: Kriol of Northern Australia'. Here we show you a snippet of the great work Greg and Grant are doing.

Grant Thompson

Grant Thompson is a Ngandi man of the Wurlngarri clan. He grew up in Kriol speaking communities of Ngukurr, Urapunga and Numbulwar in Northern Australia. Since taking on a role at the Ngukurr Language Centre as a language worker three years ago, he has begun learning Ngandi which is a critically endangered language. He teaches Ngandi at the local school and works on other projects, including video projects, receiving an Excellence in Community TV Award in 2015 for a short documentary Bla Mela Langgus (Our Language).

The documentary Bla Mela Langgus is about the languages of the Roper River region, and advocates for the study and preservation of traditional languages.

Read an excellent bilingual interview with Grant (in both Kriol and English), where he explains the inspiration and motivation behind his documentary making: 'Interview with Grant Thompson: winner of the Excellence in Community TV Awards 2015'

Grant was also recently interviewed by ABC news on the Ngandi language program that he and the Ngukurr Language Centre are running at the local school in Ngukurr. You can watch the interview; and read an article about it: 'Last fluent Ngandi speaker works to pass on endangered Indigenous language'

Greg Dickson

Greg Dickson has worked with Kriol speakers in the Katherine Region since 2002 including work as a community linguist and interpreter. He completed a PhD at the Australian National University in 2015 looking at how lexical knowledge and concepts transfer from a traditional language (Marra) to Kriol. Greg is currently researching dialects of Kriol via a Postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Queensland with the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language.

Read an article that Greg has written about Kriol forThe Conversation: 'Explainer: the largest language spoken exclusively in Australia - Kriol'

Read a blog post Greg has written about translation issues in Kriol signage: 'When Kriol signs go right - and when they go wrong'

Read another blog post Greg has written reflecting on the disparate attitudes toward 'humbugging' in his home town of Katherine: 'Don't give them any money'