Animacy In Action

For this second blog post on animacy we will talk more about how it works when actually using the language. It’s important to recognize that animacy is very complicated to describe and understand as a concept. As a matter of fact, linguists have struggled for a long time to explain it so don’t feel bad…

What is the National Breath of Life Institute for Indigenous Languages?

Many are familiar with the Myaamia Center’s work in archive-based language revitalization on behalf of the Miami Tribe. Due to our history of forced removal, land loss, and assimilation policies that resulted in the loss of our language, the Miami Tribe has utilized archival documents to reconstruct and aid in our revitalization efforts. Archive-based language…

Naming as a Source of Resiliency

By Kiišikohkwa ‘Haley Shea’ and Meemeehšhkia ‘George Ironstrack’ My (Kiišikohkwa – Haley) journey toward receiving a Myaamia name reflects the growth and change that I have experienced within my own Myaamia identity.  Before I began attending tribal educational programming, I knew my father had a “Native name” that we were told was not Myaamia but…

iši neepwaamici nintaana ‘what my daughter has taught me’ Part 1

Part 1: 0 – 10 months It’s not an understatement for me to say that everything I know about Myaamia language, culture, and people comes from my family, from my wife Tina (Peehkateewa) and daughter Adeline (nicknamed Seenseewia). My first exposure and experiences with Myaamiaataweenki ‘Miami language’ began when Tina was a student in the…

An Introduction to Myaamia Nouns and Animacy

This post introduces a unique feature of Myaamia nouns known in linguistics as animacy. This system is used to separate nouns into two categories: animate and inanimate. Every noun we have falls into one or the other and that gets represented by the last letter of the word. For animate nouns the word ends in…