Native Women Language Keepers: Indigenous Performance Practices — January 28th to February 1st 2013, University of Michigan

Poster Native Women Language Keepers

Native Women Language Keepers: Indigenous Performance Practices. An Arts-Based Research Symposium with playwright Alanis King


January 28th to February 1st 2013, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Aanii! Join us for UM’s sixth arts-based research symposium, a week-long exploration of Native women’s practices as language teachers, activists, and artists. In this week, we’re workshopping a play by celebrated Native playwright Alanis King, and we will work in close connection with Miiskwaasinii’ing Nagamojig (The Swamp Singers), a Michigan-based hand-drum group, to create a praise song for Daphne Odjig’s woodland paintings in the University of Michigan’s archives.
This symposium will marry the strengths of the University of Michigan’s Anishinaabemowin language program, a thriving community of language teachers and learners, with our series of arts-based research symposia, in which we investigate ways of knowing through creative means.
In this week, we want to ask questions about the place of performance and women’s work in language survivance and revitalization, about decolonizing methodologies and performance, about honoring Native women artists, and about intercultural performance practices.

Univ. of Michigan to Remove American Indian Diorama

From ICT:

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Something has long seemed amiss in the spacious halls of the University of Michigan’s Exhibit Museum of Natural History.

Nestled among exhibits of ancient dinosaur bones, prehistoric fossils and avian taxidermy, miniature 3-D scenes depicting Native Americans have been on display for decades.

Indian faculty members, students and others who visit have often felt the dioramas were out of place in the museum. Soon, to many Natives’ delight, they will be taken out.

“We are living, breathing, contemporary human beings,” said Margaret Noori, a professor of Ojibwe language and literature at the University of Michigan. “Many of us felt it was wrong that we had been represented so long as little dolls in the context of a natural history museum.”

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New Book: Anishinaabemowin Maajaamigad (The Anishinaabe Language Leaves)

Anishinaabemowin Maajaamigad (The Anishinaabe Language Leaves)

A community welcomes its veterans home from World War II and they work together to build something for the future generations and to remember the past. Authors Howard Kimewon and Margaret Noori share this story of Manitoulin Island, “the place of the spirits.” Set in 1940s, this true story of survivors of war honoring those who will never return by building an ice arena is told in both Anishinaabemowin and English.

The book contains a three-line version of the story so that readers will see and learn the meaning of each word in the Anishinaabe order. The top line is exactly as it was spoken by fluent speaker, Howard Kimewon. The second line is a direct translation of the meaning contained in the words and sometimes parts of words. The third line is the same meaning as it would be spoken by someone fluent in English. There is often a difference between the literal and literary English and clearly seeing that difference can help students understand how to think and speak in Anishinaabemowin.

For Kimewon, a teacher and author who grew up in the Murray Hill area of Wikwemikong Unceded Reserve and heard these stories passed down from generations, this is an opportunity to share both his language and his history. As a boy he skated at this rink and heard the story of how it came to be. As he told this story it was carefully transcribed and edited by Noori.

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Meg Noori on Jane Johnston Schoolcraft

Margaret Noori has published a book review essay on the recent collection of writings by Jane Johnston Schoolcraft (edited by Robert Dale Parker), the Ojibwekwe who married Henry Schoolcraft, the Michigan Indian Agent from the 1820s to the 1940s, or so. The review essay was published in the Michigan Quarterly Review.

Yellow Medicine Review #3

Just in our mailbox, the third issue of the Yellow Medicine Review. This issue features art, poetry, and prose from Pat LeBeau (MSU), Ray Young Bear, Meg Noori (U-M), Heid Erdrich (guest editor), Lise Erdrich, and one of our favorite people, Denise Lajimodiere.

Here are a couple samples:

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