A Basque in Boise

Ricardo Rivera: Making Friends in Basque

Ricardo Rivera will talk about language politics in today’s Basque Country next Sunday at the New York Basque Club. He will focus on the recent standardization of the Basque language and its effects on the use of ‘hika’, the informal pronoun.

This event will be broadcast by New York Basque Club. Click on this link and check for the Sunday, 2nd of October event.

Sunday, October 2, 2011 at 4:00 p.m.
Reception of pintxos and drinks to follow.

307 Eckford Street
Brooklyn, NY 11222

Please RSVP for this event with Itziar by e-mail mitzalg@gmail.com or phone (201) 214-9649.


Ricardo Rivera was born in Maryland to a Cuban mother and a Puerto Rican father. His mother is half Basque by way of her mother’s parents who had immigrated to Cuba from the Goiherri region of Gipuzkoa. He became interested in the Basque language and culture after a short trip back to the Basque Country with his family. Ricardo studied Linguistics at the University of Chicago and did a year-long independent study of Basque with a Linguistics professor from Bizkaia, and studied for a month at Maizpide Euskaltegi last summer through a Tinker Field Research Grant.

His thesis concerns the standardization of the Basque language as a main part of the language revitalization movement. He analyzes the effects of the creation of Batua on the use of ‘hika,’ or the familiar ‘you’ pronoun and its verb forms. He discusses how its use has become very reduced to small pockets of native speakers in certain small towns, often only among males. At the same time, however, there are non-traditional uses of ‘hika’ as a symbol of Basque pride among mainly small-town youth.

Thanks for passing by: ↓

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