The American National Corpus (ANC) is a consortium project to develop a linguistic corpus comparable to the British National Corpus. The corpus of American English, providing a snap-shot of American English as used across a wide range of written and spoken genres, is designed for language and linguistic research and teaching.The ANC website provides details of the consortium members and project contact details; summary of aims and organisation; and a copy of the original proposal to create the corpus.
The BYU Corpus of American English is a very large collection of texts which is being made freely available online via a dedicated search interface. The interface allows the user to search the corpus for words and phrases and display the search result as a concordance with limited context. In addition to searching for exact words or phrases, users can exploit wildcards in their searches, search for lemma and part-of-speech information, look for collocates, and make semantically-based queries, amongst other things. The corpus initially consists of around 360 million words, equal amounts from each year from 1990 to 2007. New material will added at least twice a year. The texts are drawn from a variety of sources and are divided into five genres of equal size: spoken; fiction; popular magazines; newspapers; and academic journals. The search interface is simple to use, and offers functions that are not generally found in corpus search tools, such as the ability to find synonyms and compare similar words. A help file is available and information about how to use this very powerful tool is also provided in the form of a five minute guided tour. The BYU Corpus of American English is a valuable resource for anyone interested in looking at how English, especially American English, is used today. The composition of the corpus makes it particularly suitable for comparisons across time period or genre.
The Caribbean Indigenous and Endangered languages website is sponsored by UNESCO in collaboration with the Jamaican Language Unit at the University of the West Indies at Mona, Jamaica. It provides 'authoritative information' on the indigenous and endangered languages of the region (mainland and islands), including creoles, which can be accessed via country, language, or linguistic maps. The full text of a UNESCO 2004 survey report, 'Protecting, propagating and reviving Caribbean indigenous languages', is available on the site. As well as a photo gallery there are also audio clips of one of the languages, Garifuna, which require a plug-in.
First Voices offers a substantial online guide to the languages of indigenous peoples in the north of North America. First Voices is available in either English or French, and appears to be limited to coverage of 28 First Nation languages in Canada - although a map of the world suggests the project may intend to expand in future and develop what the project's description terms 'a global outreach to indigenous people'. Group and tribe pages also show examples of their arts and crafts. Also of note is the useful field-recording oriented Audio Recording Equipment Buyers Guide', which will interest many in the arts and humanities. Users will have the best experience after downloading and installing the Aboriginal fonts. Users will also require Quicktime and Windows Media Player.
The Mayan Epigraphic Database Project is an invaluable resource for anyone working on the linguistic aspects of Maya or Mesoamerican culture. Owned and co-ordinated by Rafael C. Alvardo at Princeton University, the site is described as an "experiment in network scholarship", and is especially directed towards academics or postgraduate students with a good familiarity with Mayan linguistics. The database catalogues and cross-references a wide range of classical Mayan writing (c. 300 CE - 900 CE), including glyphs, and phonetic and semantic characters based on the consensus agreements between Maya scholars. Material is easily and rapidly searchable by selecting the associated glyph-number or its equivalent phonetic value, and can display not only complete glyph forms but also list all known words containing a given phoneme. An exciting related programme is the development of a digital-text archive that recreates texts and inscriptions by substituting alphanumeric values for glyphs. This allows for much easier processing and analysing Mayan writings, but also aids decipherment by identifying patterns in the construction of the writings.
Compiled by the scholar of Latin America, John F. Schwaller, the Nahuatl gateway is a website dedicated to providing access to online resources concerning the Nahuatl language and the Aztec culture. Resources in Nahuatl, the language of ancient Mexico, are fundamental to the study of early Latin American history and this website not only hosts the fruits of the research of many scholars associated with the NAHUAT-L discussion list, but also points researchers toward other useful websites. Containing annotated listings of manuscript sources and books, the gateway also contains several Nahuatl comprehensive dictionaries and vocabularies and useful basic resources such as a list of Nahuatl names and a guide to the Aztec calendar. Supported by recognised scholars in the field, this website is a fundamental resource for any researcher of the subject.
The 'Northwest Journal of Linguistics' is an academic peer-reviewed online journal dealing with the description and analysis of the languages of northwestern North America (United States and Canada), published since 2007. Its website makes freely available full-text versions of all the papers as well as tables of contents and abstracts. Papers are in PDF format, and some are accompanied by sound files for which an audio plug-in may be required. The website includes the contact details of the editorial board and submission and style guidelines.
The Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas (SSILA) is an international academic organisation dedicated to the analysis and exploration of the non Indo-European linguistic groups throughout the American continents. The site is directed primarily towards professional scholars in anthropological, ethnographical and linguistic fields, and invites applications for membership to the organisation. By joining the SSILA, researchers gain access to membership directories, information on academic conferences as well as job notifications. Many electronic tools used to be included on the web; unfortunately they seem to have disappeared recently, and are currently not available. These included searchable indices for over 100 different journals published in the last 12 years, as well as an index of dissertation abstracts on a host of Indigenous languages. For the teaching and learning of languages, SSILA’s site provides an index of learning aids to over 50 North American indigenous languages. While the resources are generally not available electronically, the site does detail the publishers of these resources and from where they can be obtained. Those who wish to research a language on the Internet should consult the extensive links page, organised by language and dialect.
The website The Study of Nuuchahnulth Grammar : Consequences for a Theory of Language details a project based at the University of Newcastle, and directed by Dr John Stonham. The project is now concluded and the website is not updated. One of the aims of the project, which started in 2001, was to provide a detailed account of the grammatical structure of Nuuchahnulth language. This language, native to Vancouver Island was the subject of a model standard for the assembling and presentation of little-studied languages, that the project was hoping to establish as part of the project. The project also aimed to produce a dictionary and to contribute to the comparative lexicography of the Wakashan family of languages.The basis of the project was the records collected at the turn of the twentieth century by Edward Sapir (an example of the manuscript is provided on the site). This project received funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRB) within the Research Grants scheme.