Native Languages of the Southwest at UT Arlington
From the 2012 Oklahoma Breath of Life Workshop; the Alabama group, with UT Arlington Linguistics &Student Lori McLain Pierce

Department of Linguistics & TESOL | The University of Texas at Arlington

CoLang 2014: Institute on Collaborative Language Research



Innu Cree (Algonquian; [moe])


This course is an introduction to linguistic field methods. We will work with two speakers of the Algonquian language Innu, eliciting and analyzing data from all areas of grammar. In addition to methods of elicitation, instruction will include such topics as transcribing, managing, and organizing data; and ethical, social, and cultural issues in fieldwork.
Using a cloth-bound notebook with acid-free paper, such as the Clairefontaine brand ( is recommended but not required.
IMPORTANT: Prospective students are asked not to do any research or reading on the structure of the language in advance. We will at least begin with the classic field methods approach of treating the language as undescribed. At some point in the semester this ban may be lifted.

Using a cloth-bound notebook with acid-free paper, such as the Clairefontaine brand ( is recommended but not required.
This will be available from the UTA bookstore.

Macaulay, 2004

Language Description

The Innu language (known as Innu-Aimun by its speakers) is part of the central branch of the Algonquian family and it belongs to a great dialectal complex (group of closely related dialects) called Cree-Montagnais-Naskapi which extends from Alberta to Labrador. Innu-Aimun is one of the ten aboriginal languages spoken in Quebec and one of the few languages spoken in Labrador. It has three dialects : west, central and east. Currently, it is estimated that there are 11,000 speakers.
Innu is a living and descriptive language. It possesses its unique ways to perceive the world and describe things. The vocabulary is rather rich and embellished with imagery. It is a polysynthetic language which means that we can incorporate several unity of sense in a word. For instance, akauashteshinu means 'he lays there, hidden from the sun'.

Language Consultants

Gaëlle Mollen

My name is Gaëlle Mollen, i am 22 years old and i come from the community of Ekuanitshit located in the north shore Quebec in Canada. My mother is Innu from Ekuanitshit and my father comes from Chad in Africa. I lived with my mother all my life so she gave me her language Innu-Aimun. Although i have not lived all my life in my community i do speak innu with my mother, all my relatives and innu people. I’m proud to speak my language Innu-Aimun. I am currently studying in the University of Ottawa. I’m doing a major in anthropology and a minor in aboriginal studies. I plan on finishing my studies and work with aboriginal people from my community and others community.

Uapukun Mestokosho

My name is Uapukun Mestokosho which means flower in Innu Aiamun. I am 22 years old and I come from Ekuanitshit in the North Shore Quebec in Canada. I always lived there but just couple years out to studie Human-Sciences – First Nations Profil at Kiuna Institution in Odanak an Abenaki village. I am very proud to speak my mother tongue and it’s important to me to keep my language alive.


Monica Macaulay - Click here to view her biography.