Desiree Hellegers speaks with Julian Ankney, who reads from her memoir in process, A Bouquet of Frogs, about coming of age as a Nimiipuu woman in a small Idaho town, battling an abusive step-father, racist and sexist teachers, and fighting for access to education and health care.
Weaving Language: New Reflections on Corn Husk Bags
October 29th, 2020 4-5pm PT
Detail of a corn husk bag. 2-10310.
Suggested donation - $10
Free registration - $0
Support this event with an additional donation - $?
In conversation with author and UC Berkeley professor Beth Piatote, members of a recently formed Nez Perce writing and language revitalization group will share new work reflecting on woven corn husk bags. Readings of these works will tie together histories of these objects and contemporary perspectives on Ni:mi:pu: (Nez Perce) language, community, and culture. At a time when people are divided by the many challenges facing our communities today - a pandemic, racial injustice, climate change - this program offers a rare chance to build community through the tangible (objects in the Hearst Museum's collection) and the sometimes intangible (language and story) and inspire audiences to interpret the world around them through creative and intersectional approaches.
This event is presented alongside the Hearst Museum’s current online exhibit, Cloth that Stretches: Weaving Community Across Time and Space, which explores textiles as a site of identity formation and cultural resilience. At a time when people are divided by the many challenges facing our communities today - a pandemic, racial injustice, climate change - this program offers a rare chance to build community through the tangible (objects in the Hearst Museum's collection) and the sometimes intangible (language and story) and inspire audiences to interpret the world around them through creative and intersectional approaches.
Beth Piatote, author and Associate Professor of Native American Studies at UC Berkeley, is an active member of a recently formed Ni:mi:pu: (Nez Perce) group that employs creative writing as a means of language revitalization. This program will support the production and presentation of new work with a specific focus on the tradition of corn husk bag weaving by Nez Perce and other Plateau peoples. In addition to readings of these new pieces of writing, this event will feature a cultural resources representative speaking specifically to the process, tradition, and iconography of corn husk bags. UNESCO has recognized the urgency of Indigenous language revitalization around the globe, and declared 2022-32 the Decade of Indigenous Languages, making this a timely moment for such a program.
The Hearst Museum of Anthropology at UC Berkeley stewards a collection of corn husk bags which have not yet been the subject of robust research or creative response. This is a unique opportunity to bring together UC Berkeley faculty, creative writers, and cultural experts to produce new research and writing, and collaboratively share the results with a wide, virtual audience. The co-sponsorship of this event by multiple units across campus speaks to this event’s potential for reaching diverse audiences and serving as a means to build interdisciplinary bridges.
Phillip E. Cash Cash
Beth H. Piatote
Associate Professor, Department of Comparative Literature
Native American Studies
Affiliated Faculty, Department of Linguistics
Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies
Chair, Designated Emphasis in Indigenous Language Revitalization
University of California, Berkeley
Unceded Ohlone Homelands
The Beadworkers: Stories comes out in paperback in October 2020