Altai-Sayan

Altai-Sayan Language and Ethnography Project

The Altai-Sayan Language and Ethnography Project [ASLEP] is a multi-media documentation project on the endangered languages and cultures of the Turkic-speaking populations of the Altai-Sayan cultural and geographic complex. The results from this project are housed under the heading ‘Tofa’ under the DoBeS Dokumentation bedrohter Sprachen program funded by Volkswagen Stiftung (through a grant to Dr. K. David Harrison).

Marta Kongaraeva, primary Tofa language consultant

Marta Kongaraeva, primary Tofa language consultant

Languages investigated and recorded in annotated media include Todzhu, Dukha, Tsengel, Monchak, and Tofa, the latter with fewer than 30 speakers now.

The Altai-Sayan Language and Ethnography Project has several facets. One is the documentation of the endangered languages and traditional knowledge of the Altai-Sayan region, in particular that of the Tofa, and to a lesser extent those of the Todzhu, Dukha, Tsengel Tuvan, and Monchak.

In addition to hours of annotated video sessions in multiple languages housed in the DoBeS archive at Nijmegen, Netherlands, ASLEP has produced a children’s reader, a Talking Online Tuvan Dictionary, numerous papers on a range of topics, and data from ASLEP has figured prominently in books such as When Languages Die by David Harrison, and Auxiliary Verb Constructions by Greg Anderson.

Tuvan Playlist (54 videos)

Varvara and Galina Adamova, last speakers of Tofa

Lydia Stepanova Bolxoeva, last speaker of Tofa

Tofa Story by Konstantin Mukhaev

Spartak on Tofa schooling and reading

Spartak on Tofa discrimination and traditional dress

Tofa speaker Prokopij recites song lyrics ‘irgak kuuday’

Elicited Tofa reading with Tatiana Nikolaevna

Lukeria Yakovlevna sings a Tofa song

Elizaveta Kenden sings kozhamyk in Todzhu-Tuvan language

Bürbüldei Erzinchievna Kol counts from 1 to 20 in the Todzhu Tuvan dialect

Lyudmila Baraanovna Mongush sings “Tozhuma”, a Tozhu Tuvan song

Alexei Balganovich Nuguurak reads from his published work in the Todzhu Tuvan dialect

Monchak Tuvan goat color & pattern naming system‬

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