Seminar to be held on Greek language, identity and belonging in Melbourne

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Dr Stavroula Nikoloudis, coordinator of the Greek Studies program at La Trobe University, and Professor of Linguistics James A. Walker, will present a lecture titled “Greek in Melbourne: language, identity and belonging” on Thursday, May 11, 2023, at 7 pm at the Greek Centre, as part of the Greek History and Culture Seminars offered by the Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM).

The lecture will provide a brief overview of the history of the Greek language in Melbourne and its role in the Victorian education system. The speakers will detail the current approaches used in the Greek Studies program at La Trobe University, and their involvement in the Pharos initiative, which aims to review Greek language teaching commissioned by the Modern Greek Teachers’ Association of Victoria.

The presentation will report on responses to an online survey conducted in 2020-2021 and ongoing interviews, which explore views about identity and language use among three generations of Greek Australians in Melbourne. These results provide up-to-date information from members of the wider community about their language choices and the contexts and types of interactions in which they use Greek. This information will enable the speakers to assess the needs of Greek speakers and improve the language education experience, supporting the Pharos strategic plan for revitalising the acquisition, study, and use of Greek in Australia.

Professor James A. Walker is a linguistics professor at La Trobe University. After completing his degrees at the University of Toronto and the University of Ottawa, he worked at York University (Toronto) until taking up his current position in 2017. He has conducted research on English in Australia, Canada, and the Caribbean, Sango (Central African Republic), Swedish and Brazilian Portuguese. His research is concerned with language variation and change, bilingualism, ethnicity, and identity.

Dr Stavroula (Stephie) Nikoloudis is the coordinator of the Greek Studies program at La Trobe University. She researches Greek language and society, from Mycenaean to modern times. Her teaching centres on Classical and Modern Greek language and literature. Dr Nikoloudis is especially interested in questions of ethnic identity and cultural diversity, migration, language development, and language education. She is a member of Pharos, a community-wide campaign aimed at revitalising Modern Greek in Victoria and across Australia.

Event Details:

  • When: Thursday, May 11, 2023, 7pm.
  • Where: Greek Centre (Mezzanine, 168 Lonsdale St, Melbourne).
  • Entry: Free.

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