Chikashshanompa' Ilanompohóli Bíyyi'ka'chi [We Will Always Speak the Chickasaw Language]: Considering the Vitality and Efficacy of Chickasaw Language Reclamation
AuthorChew, Kari Ann Burris
Language, Reading & Culture
AdvisorNicholas, Sheilah E.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis dissertation is grounded in stories of how Chickasaw people have restructured and dedicated their lives to ensuring the continuance of Chikashshanompa', their Indigenous heritage language. Building on an earlier study of what motivates Chickasaw people-across generations-to engage in language reclamation, these pages explore how: 1) Chickasaw young adult professionals who have established careers with the Chickasaw Nation Department of Language have made language reclamation their life's pursuit; 2) Chickasaw citizens-at-large, who reside outside of the Chickasaw Nation, engage in language reclamation, and 3) the study of Chikashshanompa' in school has impacted Chickasaw high school and university students' conceptualizations of their personal and social identities. Together, the perspectives of these groups of language learners comprise a case study of Chickasaw people's resilient and tireless efforts to ensure that Chikashshanompa' ilanompohóli bíyyi'ka'chi¹ [we will always speak the Chickasaw language]. As a Chickasaw person and language learner myself, I worked from culturally-grounded research methodology which embraced my cultural identity and personal relationships with other Chickasaws involved in language reclamation. One key feature of this methodology was my reconstruction of in-depth, phenomenological interviews as participant profiles-or stories-as a means to present and analyze data. Individually, these stories tell of the nuanced and diverse experiences of Chickasaw language learners representing distinct generational categories and demographics. Collectively, they reflect three key themes enabling the vitality and efficacy of Chickasaw language reclamation: 1) a raised critical Chickasaw consciousness, 2) the conception of Chikashshanompa' as cultural practice, and 3) the (re)valuing of language learners.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Language, Reading & Culture
Degree GrantorUniversity of Arizona
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