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Obata, Kazuko

Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies
Linguistics: Bilua language       


Current affiliation, academic qualifications and contact details

I am a language officer at the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. This organisation is dedicated to research in Australian Indigenous studies. I hold a PhD in linguistics as the result of my research in Bilua, the language spoken at the Vella Lavella island. My contact details are:

Dr. Kazuko Obata
GPO Box 553
Canberra ACT 2601
Phone: (02) 6246 1166
Fax: (02) 6249 7714
Email: kazuko.obata@aiatsis.gov.au (work), kazuko.obata@emailme.com.au (private)



I am no longer doing research in this area. My PhD research took place from mid-1996 to early 2000. I cannot recall the exact dates of the field work I did in Vella Lavella island, but I think it was February-June 1997 and September-November 1998. I became quite fluent in Bilua although I haven't used it since I completed my PhD in
early 2000. I sent a copy of my original thesis to the Ministry of Education in Solomon Islands but I don't know whether they received it or not. I also sent a copy of my thesis to a few Bilua speakers, but again I cannot tell whether they received it or not. My thesis describes a grammar of Bilua but is written in technical linguistic term so it is probably not much use to the speaker themselves unless it is re-written in
non-linguistic terminology.  I do not know the current state of the Bilua language, if it is declining, my thesis would be a useful resource for the language.  I recorded the language in cassette tapes, and if I manage to digitise them, I will send a copy to you.

Key publications/reports/materials

The published thesis is the only publication on Bilua I made.


Obata (2003) A grammar of Bilua (monograph) (4.355 MB).pdf

Western Solomons
Updated 12 January, 2011