The Audio-Visual Linguistic Atlas of Bukovina (ALAB) – a multidimensional platform for analising Romanian dialectal variation
2022-04-13, 15:00–15:30 (Europe/Vienna), Room 2

Romanian linguistic cartography has a rich tradition in the wider context of European geolinguistics given the fact that there are currently three series of linguistic atlases of national character which have appeared in the last century: Linguistischer Atlas des dacorumänischen Sprachgebietes (1909), Atlasul lingvistic român (1938-1942), and Atlasul lingvistic român pe regiuni. Sinteză (2005-), the latter bringing together in a cartographic manner based on the use of symbols the most representative linguistic material for the diatopic variation of Romanian as it is present in Noul Atlas lingvistic român pe regiuni (NALR) series.
The efforts of Romanian dialectologists aiming at the development of the national linguistic cartography have focused in recent times in two main directions: a) the publication at a more rapid pace of the last volumes of the NALR series; b) the renewal of the atlantographic approach both at the level of the logistical support used in the drafting of atlases and at the conceptual level.
Atlasul lingvistic audiovizual al Bucovinei (ALAB) is the latest project which has set itself the objective of developing the digital perspective in Romanian linguistic atlantography research and which was designed ab initio to meet a double challenge: a) the desire to safeguard, in an interactive multimedia format, the dialectal diversity of the ethnocultural area of Bucovina (north-eastern Romania) – which has been recognized from the beginning of the Romanian geolinguistics researches as a mosaic zone from the dialectal point of view; b) the intention to carry out an audiovisual linguistic atlas and to develop in the Romanian niche research the multimedia technology necessary for such a scientific enterprise.
The innovative side of ALAB is given by two elements: a) the multimedia support (, as a means of archiving and displaying the linguistic material on the Internet; b) the sociolinguistic component of the dialect survey which is the result of the implementation of a multidimensional research strategy, thanks to which in each locality will be surveyed a number of four people, in order to be able to validate two of the parameters considered in the niche literature as having a distinctly discrete character for linguistic variation: age (young / old) and sex (female / male). In addition, the project aims to emphasise the diacronic variability of local dialects, by putting in parallel on the project website the answers obtained more than 40 years ago during the surveys of the NALR. Moldova and Bucovina project with the responses obtained with the ALAB questionnaire.
Besides the dialect surveys, this project aims to create also an archive of documents written in dialectal register, which will be collected from family archives and digitized on site using portable scanners. In this way, the ALAB will go beyond the status of a linguistic cartography work by transforming itself into a database of the "interactive multimedia document" type, capable of facilitating variational approaches both from a diatopic and / or diastratic point of view, and from a diachronic or even diamesic point of view.


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I am senior researcher at the Department of Dialectology and Sociolinguistics, the “A. Philippide” Institute of Romanian Philology – the Iasi Branch of the Romanian Academy. My areas of competence: Romanian dialectology, sociolinguistics (sociolinguistics of migration, sociolinguistic minorities), geolinguistics (computerization of linguistic cartography) and pragmalinguistics (conversation analysis, sociopragmatics).

Senior Researcher
Dialectology and Sociolinguistic Department
The “A.Philippide” Institute of Romanian Philology
Romanian Academy