A Reference Grammar of Kotiria (Wanano)

Kristine Stenzel

University of Nebraska (publisher)

Published through the Recovering Languages and Literacies of the Americas initiative, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon FoundationThis volume is the first descriptive grammar of Kotiria (Wanano), a member of the eastern Tukanoan language family spoken in the Vaupes River basin of Colombia and Brazil in the northwest Amazon rain forest. The Kotirias, who have lived in this remote region for more than seven hundred years, participate in the complex Vaupés social system, characterized by long-standing linguistic and cultural interaction. The Kotirias remained relatively isolated from the dominant societies until the early part of the twentieth century, when increasing outside influence in the region triggered rapid social and linguistic change. Today the Kotirias number only about sixteen hundred people, and their language, though still used in traditional communities, is in risk of becoming endangered.Kristine Stenzel draws on eight years of intensive work with the Kotirias to promote, record, and revitalize their language. Working with dozens of native speakers and drawing on numerous oral narratives and written texts, this book is the first comprehensive study of this endangered language and one of the few reference grammars of this language family.

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