- Professor Anne Anderson, VP College of Social Sciences, University of Glasgow, begins the launch event with thoughts and reflections from The Lighthouse, Rennie Mackintosh Building for Glasgow School of Art following the fire.
Professor Charles Forsdick, AHRC Translating Cultures Theme Fellow gives an overview of the unprecedented scale, size and complexity of the new large grants, and their place in the AHRC programme.
- Professor Alison Phipps gives a poetic reflection and introduction to the work ahead, rooted in human concerns.
" English was an accident of birth which has meant I can assume a certain privilege in the world. I can expect many to speak to me in my own language without needing to make any effort myself. There is a danger in the dominance of a single language. The dominance of English in the world is held in place historically, politically and economically. It is no accident or God-given right. It is the language I use to speak to you now because of the histories of slavery, of colonialism, of trade, of globalisation; because of pacts, treaties and laws made by others, which stick to me like glue."
- Mr Humza Yousaf, MSP, Minister for External Affairs and International Development launches the project, congratulates the team and University of Glasgow and offers his reflections on the importance of languages to international relations. Languages play an important role in the recently launch New Scots strategy for integration of asylum seekers and refugees and in the policy of integration from day one of arrival. http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/0043/00439604.pdf …
He highlights the distinctive approach GRAMNet have brought to academic work in the field and its success in attracting funding to this important field.
- Hekani! - Ganyamatope - Tawona Sithole, poet in residence with GRAMNet and with the RM Borders project engages the audience in call and response language learning and then performances his extraordinary poem "Good English".
- Beautiful film by Katja Frimberger and Showman Media in many languages with people treasuring words and songs which tell of home and which speak of a welcome to Glasgow. A moment of intense listening in to the languages from the audience.
- Gameli and Cecilia Tordzro, hot off a plane from Ghana, of Pan African Arts Scotland and the Ha Orchestra begin the drumming and refreshments are served. Many folk respond to the invitation to share their own treasured words to the camera. Lovely to see so many people in the audience - from far and wide as well as local support. Thanks to all who came to share the beginning of this journey.