Adelaide Language Festival to celebrate cultural and intellectual diversity

Adelaide Language Festival – 29th November

2:00pm – 7:00pm


The University of Adelaide is hosting a free public event on Wednesday 29 November 2017 to celebrate cultural and intellectual diversity, and to help university students, high school pupils and adults in the community learn more about the various cognitive and health benefits of being multilingual.

Crash courses of 20 languages from around the globe will be given at the event, which will also feature an opening address by the Governor of South Australia, His Excellency the Hon. Hiếu Văn Lê AC, and a keynote speech on the Virus of Language by the Hon. Rev. Dr Lynn Arnold AO.

Among sessions on Mandarin Chinese, French, Kaurna, Pitjantjatjara, Japanese, Korean, Indonesian, Latin, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Arabic, Israeli (Hebrew), Hungarian, Udmurt (Russia), Russian, Kalasha (Pakistan), German and English as a Foreign Language, there will also be sessions on the artistically-constructed Klingon and Vulcan languages from the Star Trek movies and TV series, and the international auxiliary constructed language Esperanto.

Each crash course will provide background about the language (for example where it is spoken and to which language family it belongs, number of speakers and percentage of children speaking it); basic knowledge in language (such as greetings); one unique characteristic; and information about where it might be possible to continue to learn the language in Adelaide or online.

2017 Event Video

2017 Event Program

Attendees take up seating in Bonython Hall
Musical performance: Paris & Tahlia Williams, violin duo
Welcome to Country: Taylor Tipu Power-Smith
Welcome address: Interim Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Mike Brooks
Opening Address: His Excellency the Governor of SA, Hieu Van Le AC
Performance in language: Anastasia Calvert (Korean), Siobhan Owen (Breton)
Address: Prof Ghil’ad Zuckermann
Keynote Address: The Hon. Rev. Dr Lynn Arnold AO, The Virus of Language
Crash courses in three languagesFrench, Mandarin Chinese, Kaurna

2017 Languages Programme (download)












    2017 Event Photo Gallery

Further particulars: Ghil’ad Zuckermann, (08) 8313 5247 or 0423 901 808


The Adelaide Language Festival is grateful to its sponsors, who have sought to give prominence to the importance of language learning by enabling us to host an event that brings together language speakers and students of languages from a diversity of backgrounds.

We would particularly like to thank the South Australian School of Languages and the Languages and Cultures Network for Australian Universities (LCNAU) for all of the logistical support that made this Festival possible

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