Faculty Member Ryan Decaire on the Mohawk Language Revival

In a recent NOW article, Indigenous Studies faculty member, Ryan Decaire discussed the movement to revive the Mohawk language.

In Canada, there are currently 2360 Mohawk speakers and Decaire wants to change this number. “We’re in a situation where the intergenerational transmission has been broken,” Decaire explained to NOW. This means that to increase the number of fluent Mohawk speakers, Canada needs to invest in language learning programs. Programs like the language classes offered through Indigenous Studies at the University of Toronto, where Decaire has been teaching Mohawk for two years.

Decaire also spoke about the importance of non-Indigenous people learning Indigenous languages, explaining that it helps forward the goal of reconciliation. “When you’re studying Indigenous people, political perspectives and learning languages…it enriches students’ capacity to be good allies,” DeCaire told NOW. For Decaire, teaching Indigenous languages created good neighbours.

Make sure to read the full article: The movement to revive the Mohawk language is growing.