Kaurna Warra Pintyanthi
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"Kaurna Warra Ngayirda Wingkurila (On the Airwaves)"
Kaurna Language Radio Shows

> Kaurna land, language and identity (July 2013)

About this Radio Show

Workshops in 2010 to develop the first radio show identified land, language and identity as a main theme.

The show explores first early linguistic evidence for Kaurna occupation of the Fleurieu Peninsula south of Adelaide, presented in a kitchen table chat between Kaurna people of various ages. Younger Kaurna voices enquire about the extent of Kaurna country through the recounting of stories by Kaurna Elders about Sally and Harry and referring to the earliest known Kaurna sources:  a wordlist recorded by Gaimard in 1826 and published in 1833;  Kaurna speakers contracted by Colonel Light at Rapid Bay in 1836; and of Kalloongoo, the informant for Robinson’s Kaurna wordlist collected in 1837.

The theme of Kaurna placenames is also addressed in this first show. A number of Kaurna placenames have always been in use across the Adelaide Plains and Fleurieu Peninsula (also see our Kaurna Placenames Website). Prominent examples include Noarlunga, Aldinga, Yankalilla, Willunga, Onkaparinga, Myponga and Waitpinga. These are all names with which every Adelaidean can identify, though many listeners may never have thought about their Kaurna origins or have any idea of their meanings.

Another important subtheme is addressing the difference between a welcome or greeting to Kaurna land, appropriately delivered by a Kaurna person, and an acknowledgement of
Kaurna land
which is deemed appropriate for a non-Kaurna person to deliver in the Kaurna language.

Framing the first show in this manner indicates a strong desire to educate members of the Kaurna community and to raise awareness within the community at large about Kaurna country and Kaurna protocols. Few people in the Kaurna community, let alone the community at large, have much knowledge of the Kaurna language, so there was no point in producing radio shows that were 100% in the Kaurna language, even though this would be possible.

Of course the production of an hour-long radio show entirely in Kaurna language would take
much, much longer to produce, with additional rehearsal time required. Rather, we identified segments where the use of the Kaurna language was able to be introduced naturally and appropriately for an English-speaking audience.

We devised an introductory Kaurna language lesson with Jack Kanya Buckskin as the teacher, as he is in real life. We tried to re-create the atmosphere of a real-life Kaurna language class beginning with the Kaurna Plains School song sung in Kaurna by students from the school. Jack calls the class to order and then interacts with students in the class teaching them greetings and expressions for where the students are from and where they are living. This entire segment is initially in Kaurna and only Kaurna. After a first run through, Jack goes through the lesson for a second time with short segments replayed from the original lesson followed by Jack’s explanations of what people said.

We also scripted banter and jokes between Jack Buckskin and his mate Jamie Goldsmith. The script for this banter was devised in a workshop in which Buckskin and Goldsmith participated. It mirrors to some extent the ways in which they do actually use Kaurna amongst themselves. To make this banter and joking intelligible to the listening audience we scripted Buckskin talking in Kaurna with Katrina Power and later Kauwanu Lewis O’Brien, with Goldsmith in the scenario having some knowledge of Kaurna, enough to partially understand and misunderstand what is said. His lack of knowledge and understanding leads him to seek clarification in English. This forces Buckskin to explain to Goldsmith in English about the double meanings in some Kaurna expressions.

The following pages contain sections of the script and the respective sound files (mp3).


Introduction (1:00min)

Song: Yarta Ngadluku Ngangkita (3:07min)

Welcome to Country and Acknowledgement of Kaurna Country (2:38min)

Kitchen Table Chat about Kin Terms, History and Placenames (8:59min)

Song: Karrawirra Parri (4:26min)

Niku Wangkanthi -- Telling Jokes in the Kaurna language (2:28min)

Song: Ngadluku tarrkarri (3:30min)

Kaurna Warra Tirka'dlu - Let's learn the Kaurna Language (:27min)

Song: Niina Marni (4:32min)

Words from Class (5:46min)

Song: Warraparna Kaurna (3:39min)

Interview Jack Kanya Buckskin (3:59min)

Interview Alitya Wallara Rigney (3:02min)

Interview Rob Amery (2:13min)

Acknowledgments (0:39min)

Song: Ngaityu Warra (2:11min)