Indigenous Languages Gaining Space in Ecuador

JSC: Jamaicans in Solidarity with Cuba

Source:  TeleSUR

Ecuador is working to rescue and promote the use of indigenous languages.

indigenous people ecuador 1As reparation for historical injustices and as a means to strengthen the nation’s intercultural identity, the Ecuadorean government and its citizens are prioritizing the recuperation of the country’s 14 indigenous languages.

Indigenous languages disappearing

Human migration and society’s stigmatization of their tongue are two factors that have led to the near disappearance of some languages in recent years. Studies have shown that in 1950 14 percent of the population spoke an indigenous language, with that number plummeting to 3.7 percent in 1990.

The director of the Center for Economic and Social Rights, Eduardo Pichilingue, told teleSUR English, “I think that language is fundamental for creating a group, so that it has identity. I work with the Waorani indigenous group. The Waorani thankfully have a relatively healthy language still. They were contacted not too long ago, which makes the change in their language not as drastic as in other nationalities.”

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