Language Justice Circle: Listening Tour

For over 10 years, the Center for Participatory Change has been involved in creating multilingual spaces in Western North Carolina.  Through interpretation, use of simultaneous interpretation equipment, interpreter trainings and mentoring of interpreters, CPC worked to create a WNC where different communities could fully participate and have their voices heard. 

While CPC continues our commitment to supporting the development of interpreters’ technical capacity, we recognize the importance of deepening our understanding of multilingual work and its role within a larger language justice movement, as well as its role in the social justice movement.  To deepen our understanding of language in our lives, our communities, and our movement, we organized a Language Justice Tour of our region.

In 2015, we visited several communities who call the mountains of North Carolina home, including queer people of color, people of African descent, and immigrants from Latin-America of mestizo and indigenous descent who speak Spanish and indigenous languages.

Each gathering has been an opportunity to listen to people’s stories and to hear more about their relationships to language. Through the Language Justice Tour, we are excited to further define and deepen our understanding of multilingual. In December 2015 we presented a photo exhibit of the tour, hosted by Firestorm Books & Coffee.  In 2016 we hope to host a gathering of all participants in the tour. Stay tuned.