Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Sound the Stars Make Rushing Through the Sky: The Writings of Jane Johnston Schoolcraft- edited by Robert Dale Parker 312 pgs

"This book brings to the public for the first time the complete writings of the first known American Indian literary writer, Jane Johnston Schoolcraft (her English name) or Bamewawagezhikaquay (her Ojibwe name), Woman of the Sound the Stars Make Rushing Through the Sky (1800-1842). Beginning as early as 1815, Schoolcraft wrote poems and traditional stories while also translating songs and other Ojibwe texts into English. Her stories were published in adapted, unattributed versions by her husband, Henry Rowe Schoolcraft and they became a key source for Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's sensationally popular The Song of Hiawatha."  She was also the first known American Indian literary writer, the first known Indian woman writer, the first known Indian poet, the first known poet to write poems in a Native American language, and the first known American Indian to write out traditional Indian stories (as opposed to transcribing and translating from someone else's oral delivery, which she did also).

**possible use:  this could work for comparing Schoolcraft to Longfellow's poem and to show that  the original idea was inspired by Schoolcraft. Demonstrate knowledge of eighteenth-, nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century foundational works of American literature, including American Indian and other diverse cultures’ texts and how two or more texts from the same period treat similar themes or topics.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Thirteen Moons on Turtle's Back: A Native American Year of Moons -Jonathan London and Joseph Bruchac

"To many Native Americans, the 13 cycles of the moon represent the changing seasons and the passage of time. Each moon has its own special name that, while varying among the tribal nations, is consistent with the legend that the 13 scales on Old Turtle's back hold the key to these moons. The authors present 13 poems that take readers through the year, from the  'Moon of Popping Trees''--when the 'cottonwoods crack with frost' --to the 'Big Moon'' of the Abenakis.

**Third Moon is Anishinabe (Ojibwe)