By Donna Spencer The Canadian Press Fri., March 22, 2019 An NHL game called in Plains Cree is a step toward keeping Indigenous languages alive, says a hockey analyst. Former NHL centre John Chabot will join play-by-play announcer Clarence Iron, musician Earl Wood and Cree teacher Jason Chamakese in a Winnipeg studio on Sunday. The panel will provide commentary and analysis of a game between the Montreal Canadiens and Carolina Hurricanes for the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. “When you look at people’s claims to heritage and traditions, it all goes back to language,” Chabot told The Canadian Press on Friday. “We’re trying to reintroduce our languages into a lot of communities where it’s slipped over the last number of years. This just gives us more of an opportunity to let our kids know that our language is valued. Article Continued Below “To be able to present it on TV to a national audience is … [Read more...] about First Cree-language NHL broadcast an assist for reconciliation, ex-NHLer says
By Colette Derworiz The Canadian Press Thu., March 14, 2019 EDMONTON—History could be made later this month with the broadcast of what’s believed to be the first NHL game called in the Plains Cree language. The game between the Montreal Canadiens and the Carolina Hurricanes is to air on Rogers Hometown Hockey on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network on March 24. APTN will use Sportsnet’s production capabilities to air the program featuring Cree commentary and analysis. Sportsnet vice president Rob Corte called it a “momentous broadcast.” “We are truly honoured to have the opportunity to work with APTN to celebrate Canada’s Indigenous communities and the shared passion for hockey that unites us all,” Corte said in a news release. Article Continued Below The event will come on the same weekend that the Rogers Hometown Hockey festival stops at the Enoch Cree Nation near Edmonton. “This initiative also … [Read more...] about NHL game believed to be first to air in Plain Cree language
By Kashmala Fida StarMetro Edmonton Wed., Jan. 2, 2019 EDMONTON—When Brandi Morin’s kohkum (Cree for grandmother) passed away, her aunties were cleaning her house and found pieces of paper scattered throughout that had short stories and memories on them in their mother’s handwriting. They found the elongated, cursive writings on scrap bits, papers, and even flyers. They compiled all her writings in a mini book, made photocopies, and gave them to all the children and grandchildren, including Morin. Inspired by her kohkum, Morin, an Edmonton-based designer, decided to use her handwritten stories in her designs. This inspired a casual-wear line of shirts and leggings that aims to revitalize endangered Indigenous languages. Being Métis, Morin decided to call her line Mixed Blood Apparel. She is just one of many Indigenous designers from Alberta who are taking the fashion world by storm, one culturally appropriate piece at a time. The … [Read more...] about How an Edmonton-based designer is using fashion to revitalize Indigenous languages
By Hamdi Issawi StarMetro Edmonton Sun., Dec. 9, 2018 EDMONTON—As a child, Carolyn Kiskotagan was afraid to speak her native tongue. It started in Grade 3, while she was attending a public school near the Red Pheasant reserve in Saskatchewan, one with Plains Cree children like herself. She was exhilarated, finding children other than her sister to speak Cree with between classes — at least until the school found out. “I got a strap when I came in from recess,” she recalled. “I had no idea that we were not allowed to speak Cree.” The punishment struck a frightful cord that had forced her to hold her tongue, unless she was alone with her sister, when nobody else could hear her. It wasn’t until adulthood, while trying to communicate with an elder on the reserve who was straining and struggling with English, that the words just poured out of her. Article Continued Below “He was having such a horrible time and … [Read more...] about ‘Better late than never’: StatCan report finds more people are learning Indigenous languages
By Kieran Leavitt StarMetro Edmonton Thu., Aug. 2, 2018 EDMONTON—Many words in the Cree language are buried under the cultural rubble of colonization, smothered by residential schools, where children weren’t allowed to speak their native tongue. Edward Lavallee-Meequaan can fluently speak Cree—one of the country’s most widely-spoken Indigenous languages, along with Ojibway, and Innu/Montagnais. In fact, Cree is his first language. But he’s noticed that many fluent speakers are older and few young people speak it. Now 77, he lives in Edmonton, where he can use Cree more often as there is a small community of people who grew up with it as their first language and love speaking it. “When I lived in other Canadian cities, I didn’t find too many good Cree speakers,” he said. Born in 1940, he grew up on the Sturgeon Lake First Nation reserve in central Saskatchewan but went on to travel across Canada throughout his … [Read more...] about Will the government’s Indigenous languages law save endangered tongues?