Today after giving my presentation at the 2017 Indigenous Mapping Workshop, I was sad to talk to a couple of young people who had tried to learn some Cree at University, but got discouraged when they went home by family who didn’t like their pronunciation. And the family wasn’t willing to help them by slowing down, or correcting their pronunciation, either. It’s almost like a new generation being robbed of their language!
I told them I knew they weren’t alone in this experience – and that it makes me sad. Obviously it’s better to learn some Cree (even in a different dialect) than to learn none at all. And it’s better to risk mispronouncing a few words than not to try (though it may be equally important to maintain the ability to laugh at your own mistakes!)
So for them, I’m assembling a few of Simon Bird’s best anti-bullying and encouragement memes, with my very best wishes for their persistence and success. If you are trying to reclaim the Cree language as your birthright, you have the unconditional support of all of us at the Cree Literacy Network.