Something old, something new: Indigenous languages since colonisation (2018–2023)
English has changed the linguistic landscape of Indigenous Australia profoundly. Of the 300 languages spoken at first contact, only 18 remain strong. In their place is a complex array of restructured varieties, Kriol dialects and
fusions of traditional languages with English. This project seeks to undertake the first extensive survey of colonial
language change in Australia. It aims to develop new methodologies for investigating & predicting the
mechanisms of change across languages and generations of speakers. Exploring these changes is crucial to
recognising new ways of speaking & providing Indigenous communities with guiding principles for language
revitalisation. It aims to place Australia at the forefront of studies of language change.