Kawésqar language

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Kawésqar
Alacaluf
Native to Chile
Region Channel Region, western Patagonia, Wellington Island off south Chilean coast, 49° south, with centre in Puerto Edén.
Ethnicity 2,600 Alacaluf people (2002 census)[1]
Native speakers
12 (2006)[1]
Alacalufan
  • Kawésqar
Language codes
ISO 639-3 alc
Glottolog qawa1238[2]
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters.

Kawésqar (Qawasqar), also known as Alacaluf,[3] is a critically endangered language isolate spoken in southern Chile by the Kawésqar people. Originally part of a small family,[2] only the northern language remains. Only a dozen speakers of remain, half of them on Wellington Island off the southwestern coast of Chile.

Phonology[edit]

Vowels[edit]

Front Central Back
Close i u
Mid e o
Open æ a

Consonants[edit]

Labial Alveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Glottal
Nasal m n   ŋ    
Plosive p t t͡ʃ k q ʔ
Ejective t͡ʃʼ    
Fricative f s       h
Rhotic   r - ɾ        
Approximant w l j      

Writing system[edit]

The alphabet in use is as follows [1]: a, æ, c, c', e, f, h, i, j, k, k', l, m, n, o, p, p', q, r, rr, s, t, t', u, w, x. However, there are reported to be differences between dialects, and some sounds that are not represented here.

Morphology and syntax[edit]

Kawésqar has a complex system of grammatical tense, which includes a basic morphological contrast between future, present, immediate past, recent past, distant past, and mythological past events.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Aguilera Faúndez, Óscar (2001): Gramática de la lengua kawésqar. Temuco: Corporación de Desarrollo Indígena.
  • Clairis, Christos (1987): El qawasqar. Lingüística fueguina. Teoría y descripción. Valdivia: Universidad Austral de Chile [Anejo de Estudios Filológicos 12].
  • Pieter C. Muysken. 2004. The Languages of the Andes. Cambridge Language Surveys. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Kawésqar at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ a b Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Qawasqar". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  3. ^ Spelling variants include Kaweskar, Kawaskar, Qawashqar, Kaueskar and Alakaluf, Halakwulup, Halakwalip; other names include Aksanás, Aksana and Hekaine.

External links[edit]