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      An overview of Indigenous peoples in Chile and their struggle to revitalise their native languages: the case of Mapudungun

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            Abstract

            Languages are not just sets of words. They are powerful tools essential to carry history, traditions, culture and wisdom. In Latin America, Mapudungun, the native language of Mapuche people – the largest ethnic group in Chile – can be threatened. A substantial linguistic shift has characterised the panorama of native languages of the current territory. However, language and education policies have been insufficient for their preservation. This article analyses Mapudungun from a general historical perspective to define Indigenous communities’ experience in the country: insufficient state support for revitalising their languages and decolonising the Chilean national curriculum. An overview of Mapudungun in the last century is provided by explaining relevant linguistic and educational policies. The PEIB (Intercultural Bilingual Education Programme), a linguistic and educational policy in Chile, is considered in depth. It aims to improve the quality and relevance of learning from curricular contextualisation. It also seeks to teach Indigenous children their culture, traditions and languages. However, the lack of support for traditional educators and the decontextualised curriculum have further impoverished their background and increased the gap between native peoples’ languages and Chilean society. The article ends with a call to policymakers to recognise the importance of the construction of Chilean identities.

            Author and article information

            Journal
            LRE
            London Review of Education
            Lond. Rev. Educ.
            UCL Press
            1474-8479
            11 May 2022
            : 20
            : 1
            : 10
            Affiliations
            [1 ]Universidad Andres Bello, Santiago, Chile
            [2 ]Independent scholar, Chile
            Author notes
            Author information
            https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8148-9885
            https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9576-0111
            Article
            LRE-20-10
            10.14324/LRE.20.1.10
            a509331c-cd67-4d1e-8412-bdfa3d6420f8
            2022, Paulina Moya-Santiagos and Javiera Quiroga-Curín.

            This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence (CC BY) 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited • DOI: https://doi.org/10.14324/LRE.20.1.10.

            History
            : 29 August 2021
            : 01 April 2022
            Page count
            Pages: 10
            Categories
            Research article
            Custom metadata
            Moya-Santiagos, P. and Quiroga-Curín, J. (2022) ‘An overview of Indigenous peoples in Chile and their struggle to revitalise their native languages: the case of Mapudungun’. London Review of Education, 20 (1), 10. DOI: https://doi.org/10.14324/LRE.20.1.10.

            Education,Assessment, Evaluation & Research methods,Educational research & Statistics,General education
            Programa Intercultural Bilingüe,Mapuche,Chilean educational policies,Mapudungun,Intercultural Bilingual Education Programme

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