Linguistics, the study of language, provides insight into a culture and its view of the natural world. Some indigenous peoples now have dictionaries for their languages. A native speaker can provide information about words, their meanings, associations and similarities. For example, the Yupik language on Nelson Island in Alaska is intrinsically tied to the environment –there are words to describe plants, activities, and elements in the Yupik language that are non-existent in other languages. These words help Yupik people to determine how they interact with their immediate environment.

Last updated: January 13, 2016