The Konmite pou Etid Kwéyòl (KEK) in collaboration with the Cultural Division and the Kalinago Events Committee is launching a video documentary on Kalinago language initiatives at the St.Cyr ResourceCentre in the Kalinago Territory on Thursday September 22, 2022. The launching of the video forms part of activities to mark Kalinago Week 2022.
The video entitled ‘Kalinago Language Initiatives’ features various initiatives and actions being currently undertaken by the Kalinago in relation to the Kalinago language, initiatives such as naming ceremonies, radio programmes, spelling competitions, and language booklets among others. The launching ceremony will include the screening of the video followed by a discussion on the future of the language and recommendations for action going forward. The Minister for Environment, Rural Modernization and Kalinago Upliftment Honourable Cozier Frederick, Kalinago Chief Lorenzo Sanford, and various Kalinago education, language, and cultural specialists, as well as officials of KEK and the Cultural Division, are expected to be in attendance.
The video documentary was produced by KEK as part of a collaboration project between KEK and the University of Bedfordshire funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (UK). Initiated in 2019, the project entitled ‘Dominica as a Centre of Excellence for the Preservation and Celebration of the Creole Culture through Language, Arts and Indigenous Kalinagos’ was the brainchild of the late Dr. Violet Cuffy of Dominica who was a lecturer at the University of Bedfordshire at the time. Project activities were held in Dominica and in the United Kingdom and included research initiatives, conferences, exhibitions, and audio-visual documentation among others.
The Kalinago language video is one component of the audio-visual documentation initiatives carried out under the collaboration project. Other related initiatives include the production of an album Bèlè Gold by the Tradibelle Cultural Group and a video documentary on Kwéyòl in Education. The Bèlè Gold Album was launched in May this year as part of DOMFESTA Celebrations 2022. The ‘Kwéyòl in Education’ video will be launched in October as part of Creole Month celebrations in Dominica.
The videos were produced for KEK by Resolution Media headed by Kimani Casimir. KEK expects that the launching of the video on Kalinago language will contribute to the conversation on Kalinago language in the Kalinago Territory, raise awareness of the importance of language to Kalinago identity and culture, and stimulate new language initiatives going forward.