Welcome!

Hello, and welcome to the blog of the Canadian Language Museum. This is the first of what will be weekly blog posts for the Museum. This first post is meant to orient you to our purpose, mission, and goals; however, future posts will focus on particular Canadian languages, research projects being conducted relating to Canadian linguistics, or even coverage of language-based Canadian news.

The Canadian Language Museum began in 2011 to promote the languages of Canada, both indigenous and those brought from elsewhere. The goal of the Museum is to raise awareness and increase dialogue and discussion about the role of language in Canada: from the two official national languages, to the contributions of myriad cultures and peoples into the fabric of what makes Canada so great, to hopes of promoting the issue of Canada’s many endangered indigenous languages, and what can be done to preserve and revitalize them.

There have been three exhibits launched so far by the Museum, and a fourth one is in the works now. This brings us to the very interesting feature of the Canadian Language Museum (CLM): it is made up of travelling exhibits to allow for people from coast-to-coast to take part and see the works. The first of these exhibits, titled “Canadian English, Eh?”, made a very strong case for the uniqueness of the Canadian version of English we are all so proud of: from the loanwords and influences of French and Aboriginal languages to the great variation that exists across our vast sea-to-sea-to-sea country. The second exhibit, “Speaking the Inuit Way” looked at the Inuit language; giving viewers the chance to see the writing systems, dialect differences, and efforts currently underway to promote and revitalize the Inuit language and culture. The newest exhibit looked at the other language Canada shares with many countries, but that is also uniquely Canadian. “Le français au Canada” exhibit of the CLM shows how Francophone Canadians speak and use a language that is altogether different from the French of elsewhere—from the adoption into its folds of aboriginal terms to the persistence of features in Acadian French that remain in no other French variety today.

All of these exhibits are travelling across Canada, and you can contact langmuse@chass.utoronto.ca about hosting one of the exhibits, or you can select “exhibits” at the top bar to learn which exhibits will be where when.

To stay on top of all things pertaining to the Language Museum you can follow us on Twitter at : @CanLangMuseum or find us on Facebook at :https://www.facebook.com/clm.mcl

We hope to keep these pages updated frequently with interesting stories, tidbits of knowledge, and generally interesting language-y things. However, we will also let you know about where to catch the travelling exhibits, upcoming exhibits, news about the CLM, and also when a new story has been posted to the blog.

If you like looking around the website, if you’ve seen an exhibit and liked it, or if you just generally think language is an important part of Canada’s history and present culture, consider getting a membership for the CLM. We are a registered charity, and we welcome you to consider supporting us.

Thank you very much, and keep your eye on our Twitter, Facebook, and blog pages to see updates and more to keep you interested in Canadian Language.

Take care eh,

–    The Canadian Language Museum Team

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