Pitjantjatjara is part of the Western Desert Group of the Pama-Nyungan languages spoken in central Australia, particularly in the northwest of South Australia, in the southwest of the Northern Territory and in neighbouring parts of Western Australia. According to the 2016 census there are 3,125 spearks of Pitjantjatjara, which is also known as Pitjantjara or Pitjantjatjarra. About 80% of Pitjantjatjarra speakers are monolingual.
Speakers of Pitjantjatjara call themselves Anangu (people) and their language is closely related to Yankunytjatjara and Ngaanyatjarra.
Pitjantjatjara has been written with the Latin alphabet since the 1940s and the spelling system was standarised in 1979 and confirmed in 1987 by the publication of a Pitjantjatjara–English dictionary. About 50-70% of Pitjantjatjara speakers are literate in their language.
Uluru (Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) and many other sites are sacred to the Anangu, and they prefer people not to climb Uluru as they believe doing so desecrates one of their main dreaming tracks.
Ngayuku ini Raelene-nya, ngayulu wangkapai Pitjantjatjara, ngayulu ngura Areyonga-la. Munu ngayuku nyunytju mama-kulu wangkapai Pitjantjatjara, ka ngayuku tjamu walkapi Ngaatjatjarra, ka ngayuku kami wangkapai Pitjantjatjara.
Ngayuku kulta nyinapai ngura, Katukatjara-la ka palumpa tjiji kutjara, kungka munu nitayira.
Ka ngayuku kangkuru kutjara palumpa pulampa ini Karen-nya munu Janie-nya, palupula nyinapai Mutitjulula.
Hello my name is Raelene and I speak Pitjantjatjara. I live at Areyonga. My grandmother speaks Pitjantjatjara and my grandfather speaks Ngaatjatjarra. My father speaks Pitjantjatjara and my brother speaks Pitjantjatjara too. He lives at Katukatjara (Docker River) and he has got one little girl and boy. My cousins live at Mututjulu (Ayers Rock). Their names are Janie and Karen.
http://www.co.umist.ac.uk/~harold/FakingIt.doc (Word doc)
Some Pitjantjatjara words and texts
Alyawarr, Arrernte, Bundjalung, Dhuwal, Diyari, Djinang, Djinba, Gamilaraay, Gooniyandi, Gugadja, Guugu Yalandji, Guugu Yimithirr, Kala Lagaw Ya, Kalkatungu, Kaurna, Kuku Nyungkal, Kunjen, Kuuk Thaayorre, Martu Wangka, Ngaanyatjarra, Ngiyambaa, Nhangu, Noongar, Paakantyi, Pintupi, Pitjantjatjara, Warlpiri, Wemba Wemba, Wik-Mungkan, Wiradjuri, Yankunytjatjara, Yindjibarndi, Yolŋu
Page last modified: 23.04.21
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