New arrival: Cherokee Book One for Beginners by Harry Oosahwee.
Ellen Cushman, a noted scholar of Cherokee language and literacy will speak on “Cherokee Writing: Mediating Traditions, Codifying Nation” on Thursday, February 14, at 4 p.m. in Room 411 of Kimpel Hall on the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville campus.
“Cherokees have a long history of conceptualizing the use of media quite differently from the alphabetic norm in order to accommodate the Cherokee language and develop the nation as a sovereign entity,” Cushman said, previewing her talk. “Cherokees use a unique, indigenous writing system to mediate our traditions, to pursue our cultural perseverance, and to maintain our linguistic heritage.”
Cushman will offer a brief overview of the history of this mediation, revealing how one tribe continues to mediate its tradition through writing and digital videos, games, and online language classes. Drawing on five years of ethnohistorical research, the talk will describe the evolution of the Cherokee writing system from script, to print, to digital forms and show how it continues to serve important linguistic, cultural, and historical functions for the modern Cherokee Nation, marking the nation’s civility and sovereignty at once.
Cushman is Professor of Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures at Michigan State University. A Cherokee Nation citizen and a former Cherokee Nation Sequoyah Commissioner, she is the author of The Struggle and the Tools: Oral and Literate Strategies in an Inner City Community and The Cherokee Syllabary: Writing the People’s Perseverance .
Professor Chris Teuton (now at UNC-Chapel Hill) would like to spread the word of the "Cherokee Study Abroad," program which will be held May 27-June 28, 2013 from Qualla Boundary to Tahlequah. The course is "an immersive study abroad course taught by Cherokee scholars across Cherokee territory, and in conversation with Cherokee community." Deadline is Feb. 14th.
Digital brochure below:
Congrats to Professor Chris Teuton and contributors Hastings Shade, Sammy Still, Sequoyah Guess and Woody Hansen for a refreshing new book.
Here's part of the publisher's blurb:
"A collection of forty interwoven stories, conversations, and teachings about Western Cherokee life, beliefs, and the art of storytelling, the book orchestrates a multilayered conversation between a group of honored Cherokee elders, storytellers, and knowledge-keepers and the communities their stories touch."
Ryan Mackey's new blog on Cherokee-related and other things has been on-line for a few months and I'd like to call attention to it. To check out the blog, click here. Below you'll find an early excerpt from the blog to give you a flavor of his introspection: I used to be a sovereignty sort of fellow, I even wanted to be a tribal attorney and "fight" as a modern ᏗᏟᎯ. That was until I spent some time in our communities as an adult. I still think that we need those sort of legal warriors, I have since realized that’s not my path. I know our ᎠᏂᎦᏚᏩᎩ people have always been an ᎠᏰᎵ, a Nation, but not by ᎠᏂᎦᎵᏏ definitions. Those ᏲᏁᎦ people had to remake us in their own image. I know how they used colonialism and hegemony to oppress our ancestors but now they don’t even need too. We can do that ourselves - that’s self determination for you.... I had better explain myself, I am not anti-Indian or completely self loathing or even unstable - not really. I am just afraid that we are focused on the wrong things. It maybe that we are on the right path, but it is likely that if we take the time to re-evaluate our system we will find that we are beyond our scope and out of step with our needs and priorities. I am only suggesting that we re-evaluate our foundation while we still have the means.