The Language of this Land, Mi'kma'ki
Authors: Trudy Sable and Bernie Francis
The ancient landscapes of Eastern North America are reflected in the language and cultural expressions of its Indigenous peoples, the Mi''kmaq. The rhythms, sounds and patterns of their language are inextricably bound with the seasonal cycles of the animals, plants, winds, skies, waterways and trade routes. The Language of this Land, Mi''kma''ki is an exploration of Mi''kmaw world view as expressed in language, legends, song and dance. Using imagery as codes, these include not only place names and geologic history, but act as maps of the landscape. Sable and Francis illustrate the fluid nature of reality inherent in its expression - its embodiment in networks of relationships with the landscape integral to the cultural psyche and spirituality of the Mi''kmaq. Language has sustained the Mi''kmaq to the present day, a product of a lineage of Elders who spoke it, who danced the dances and walked this land,Mi''kma''ki, carrying its traditions forward despite centuries of cultural disruption, discrimination and degradation.
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