Finding the Balance: Incorporating Linguistic and Cultural Information in a Native American Language Textbook

Dr. Pamela Innes
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The Mvskoke Language Textbook includes information about Muskogee language and culture. (Mvskoke is the indigenous spelling for the language name, Muskogee is the spelling of the name of the tribe.) Both fields are included in this linguistic text because of Muskogee ideological connections between linguistic and cultural practice. My Muskogee coauthors and I developed innovative means and sections in order to present this material to our readers. We strove to achieve a balance between the two and present the information to readers through a number of formats, due to the highly variable audience. The successes and limitations of the approaches we chose, based upon responses from university students and non-academic members of the Muskogee community, and recommendations for others working to produce textbooks of this sort are discussed.

Keywords: Native American Language, Native American Epistemology, Native American Culture, Language Pedagogy, Language Ideology
Stream: First Nations and Indigenous Peoples
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Finding the Balance

Dr. Pamela Innes

Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Wyoming

I am a linguistic anthropologist interested in Native American language revitalization and maintenance programs. I have worked with tribes from the American Southeast and Plains regions. I have assisted tribes with the production of language learning materials, language archiving, and linguistic data collection. Currently, I am working with the Northern Arapaho and Shoshone tribes to develop culturally-appropriate language teaching and assessment materials.

Ref: H05P0667