Education  Peru Project #28665

Help the Shipibo-Konibo Language Flourish

A microproject by Alianza Arkana
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Help the Shipibo-Konibo Language Flourish
Help the Shipibo-Konibo Language Flourish
Help the Shipibo-Konibo Language Flourish


The Shipibo-Konibo language is endangered, but a Language Vitality Assessment can help save it by providing crucial information for future language planning, including documentation, maintenance, and revitalization activities. This important study & report will help to develop a new multi-lingual cultural dictionary, also guiding future proposals for Intercultural Bilingual Education programs and assisting other endangered Amazonian language projects.

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Language shift, or leaving a language for another, is real for the Shipibo-Konibo. Their language is considered "Definitely Endangered" by UNESCO. It is spoken by approx. 35,634 members in around 142 communities, but the increasing use of Spanish threatens the language's vitality. It is time to address this as the language could be lost within as little as two generations, and to reverse this trend we first need to understand the causes and extent of language shift within the communities.


We need to know where we are to get where we want to go. A language vitality assessment provides crucial information about who, where and how the language is being used and why it is shifting. Professor Eli Sanchez, a Shipibo-Konibo linguist and our Director of Intercultural Education, is leading this study with a team of Shipibo-Konibo linguists, educators, cultural knowledge holders, and community advocates. This assessment will lay the foundation and raise awareness for future activities.

Long-Term Impact

Language is life. Our diverse intercultural education and permaculture initiatives have already created visible results and engendered high praise from community members, neighboring schools, and the Regional Government. The initiation of language revitalization activities improves our programs by addressing and integrating an intrinsic part of the culture and life into them; the language. This will help us to reach more Shipibo-Konibo communities and others throughout the Amazon.


Organization Information

Alianza Arkana

Location: Yarinacocha, Ucayali - Peru
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Paul Roberts
Pucallpa, Ucayali Peru

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