In this study, participants learning an endangered language variety shared their experiences, thoughts, and feelings about the often complex and diverse language-learning process. I used phenomenological interviews in order to learn more about these English or Spanish language speakers’ journey with the Nahuatl language. From first encounter to their current state in their journey, participants described their challenges with gaining access to the language through courses, materials and institutions, their language observations and their sustaining motivations. In addition to those descriptions, my analysis showed many participants shared two underlying motivations for studying this language: (a) using the Nahuatl language for specific purposes, and (b) using Nahuatl as a connection to an historical or cultural past. Both of these motivations were driven by a higher purpose in ensuring the survival of speakers of this language group.


Nahuatl, Endangered Language, Language Learning, Phenomenology

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