Our producer writes about the road we took to finding David Treuer's voice and creating this particular show.
A couple of interesting items as we approach the show on languages, in which we speak to novelist David Treuer about his efforts at the revitalization of Ojibwe.
- American Indians work to preserve their languages (The Guardian, UK)
- Harper ‘sorry’ for native residential schools (The Toronto Star)
- Local language recognition angers French academy (The Guardian, UK)
“An Ojibwe Language Society Calendar” (photo: Hanson Dates/flickr)
Working on an upcoming SOF show about endangered languages, I called a professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University to get recordings of Ojibwe speakers for the radio program and website. His answering machine message was delivered first in Ojibwe and then in English. Then this week I called someone who works at an Ojibwe immersion school in Wisconsin, and his answering machine message was Ojibwe only.
It was a little disorienting but also inspiring to hear the language in this modern context, especially considering that Ojibwe is one of only a handful of Native American languages now spoken in the United States and Canada that is expected to survive beyond 2050.