Go go Jèrriais

One of the largest and most well-known educational YouTube channels – that of Dr. Simon Clark – is launching a new video today which takes Jersey, and the language of Jèrriais as its focus.

Dr. Clark is a full-time professional YouTuber and his channel currently has over 250,000 subscribers, with videos gaining over 20 million views so far. His work has featured in the national and international press, with New Scientist magazine rating the channel as number one for educational science content. Until now most of the videos have either been about Dr. Clark’s journey to achieving his PhD, or about the subject of his doctorate – climate science.

Today marks the beginning of a new series of videos looking at the PhD research of various academics, and Dr. Clark has begun with the work of Jersey musician and Jèrriais activist Kit Ashton. Kit says:

“I met Simon a while back through a mutual friend and we soon got talking about YouTube, as I’ve just started my own channel. When the idea of collaborating came up of course I jumped at the chance! It was a real blast making this video, and I’m so grateful to him for featuring our beautiful island and language.”

Kit Ashton is a PhD Candidate at Goldsmiths College, London, and his doctoral research is investigating the ways in which music can help revitalise endangered languages like Jèrriais. In the video (which will be live at noon), Dr. Clark visits Jersey, attends a Jèrriais session in a pub, and follows Kit’s band Badlabecques as they perform at Vale Earth Fair in Guernsey.

Dr. Clark says:

“It was a real privilege to showcase the language and culture of Jèrriais in this new series. I have long loved Jersey and had a fantastic time learning more about the language, and even attempting to speak some myself! I am no linguist and even I was able to have a basic conversation after a pub session – it’s a fascinating language that is worth celebrating.”

The making of the video was supported by ArtHouse Jersey and CHASE (the Consortium of the Humanities and the Arts South-east England).

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