A cooperation project of the Phonogrammarchiv, the Research Department “Variation and Change of German in Austria” at ACDH and the FWF Special Research Programme “German in Austria” (F60) will digitize, annotate and analyse the Phonogrammarchiv’s recordings of Austrian dialects on magnetic tape.

In the 1950s to 1980s, numerous linguists and dialectologists made recordings of regional varieties of spoken German all over Austria on magnetic tape. These recordings, which provide an exceptional picture of the dialect landscape of Austria, were produced with the help of the Phonogrammarchiv, where the tapes are also archived. The corpus consists of ca. 2450 audio recordings (ca. 520 hours) and constitutes a source of historical dialect audio data that is unique in the German-speaking area.

The cooperation project will create a searchable digital corpus, to be developed into an online research platform in a later step. This is highly relevant also beyond the scope of German linguistics or archiving and will guarantee optimal accessibility of this linguistic and socio-cultural treasure for all fields of research. By digitizing the audio recordings and enriching and systemizing the metadata in a searchable electronic documentation it will become possible to use these recordings in a wider scientific context  as well as make them accessible to the general public.

In phase one the project focuses on a collection of ca. 1750 dialect recordings (ca. 250 hours) that were included in UNESCO’s Memory of Austria Register in 2018.

Project coordination PhA: Christian Huber
Project coordination VaWaDiÖ and SFB DiÖ: Alexandra N. Lenz and Ludwig Maximilian Breuer

The project started in January 2019

Cooperation project Corpus of Austrian Dialect Recordings from the 20th Century
„Tonaufnahmen österreichischer Dialekte 1951–1983“ in das nationale „Memory Of The World“-Register der UNESCO aufgenommen
Memory of Austria-Verzeichnis, Tonaufnahmen österreichischer Dialekte 1951-1983
ORF Science: Geistberger / Wieselberg: Dialektarchiv ist UNESCO-Welterbe
ÖAW: Dialektaufnahmen der ÖAW im „Gedächtnis der Menschheit“
audio samples