Duo goes to the United States
If you want to follow Duo's travels, go to The Duo goes Series Directory to see all the wonderful places our owl friend has visited. If you are interested in making another segment of the series, please contact me.
The United States of America consists of 50 states including Alaska and Hawaii. The mainland is situated in the North America bordering on Canada and Mexico and reaches from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean.
Approximately 150 Native American languages are spoken in North America (including Canada). There were at least 300 languages spoken there before the arrival of Europeans.
First Duo visited a Sioux sweat lodge. He enjoyed the atmosphere of the lodge and felt light afterwards, even though the experience was rough on his feathers.
Then Duo flew along the Trail of Tears. A series of forced relocations of Native American nations took place in the 19th century. The Cherokee, Muscogee, Seminole, Chickasaw and Choctaw nations had to leave their ancestral homelands in the Southeastern United States and move further to the west. Many travelers died of disease and starvation. Duo felt guilty for flying and landed and decided to walk instead.
Then Duo was off to Alaska where he inspected some totem poles. He sat down on top of one pole and felt very high and mighty until he was told that the placing of the totems is irrelevant. The totem pole is not a sacred object but a form of storytelling he was told.
After that Duo flew to Wyoming to see the Devil's Tower. It has been a sacred place to many tribes including the Arapaho, Crow, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Lakota and Shoshone.
Then Duo flew to Sedona in Arizona. The Sedona Red Rocks are the sacred lands of the Apache and Yavapai.
And then it was time to go home to Duoverse. But first Duo purchased some souvenirs including this book that he bought, although he knew it would make him cry.
On the way home Duo studied the Cherokee alphabet...
...simply because you never know what is going to happen. :)
A lovely trip for us all to see this land
This land was made for you and me
An exceptional language lesson in words
Those languages were made for all of us
............................................................................. Luis Von Ahn
I want to learn at least two Native American languages. I would like to learn Cherokee and I want to try to learn Mohawk. (I know for a fact my great-great grandmother was Mohawk Iroquoi, which is one reason I want to learn preferably a Iroquoian Native American language.) I hope Duolingo will teach Native American languages soon, they are worth preserving.
Oh they are absolutely worth preserving! There are so many different ways to look at the world held within other languages. For example in Kanien'keha, the language of the Mohawk people, one possible way to ask "Are you happy/well?" would be to say "Skennen'kó:wa ken?" In English, this more literally means "Do you have the Great Peace?" Skennen in this sentence means peace, kó:wa means big or great, and ken is a question particle. The comma indicates a glottal stop.
To answer "Skennen'kó:wa ken?" one could respond either 1) Hen, skennen'kó:wa. - Yes, I am happy/well. 2) Yah yah, skennen'kó:wa. - No, I am not happy/well.
If you want to start learning some of the language, just YouTube search Art Martin. He has videos of class lessons with a great teacher. Good luck!
I hope Duo goes to Mexico and starts making a course for Nahuatl or one on the Mayans soon.
Will you add Hawaii? They have a lot of Native American history too!
The language they spoke is Hawaiian, similar to Tagalog :)
Yes, it is a Polynesian language. I did consider adding it but was worried that the post would get too long. But here are Duo and Manoa Falls just for you.
That will interesting, especially for those who like a challenge. Cherokee coming soon then!
BTW best to read the Wikipedia article on the language first. Interesting to see certain similarities with Chinese: Cherokee is a tonal language with a syllabic writing system, so that could mean that Chinese for English speakers might not be so far way.
Chinese does not have a syllabic writing system and they are already developing a course for a tonal language, though.
Incredibly natural beauty. Have those totem poles been refurbished? The colours are still totally vivid.
This is great news! When will Cherokee be entering the incubator?
I'm hoping for Navajo (most speakers in the US) and Ojibwe (which is the most spoken in my home state) too.
This is a post requesting Cherokee and other Native American languages, not a confirmation that they are entering the Incubator. Sorry to disappoint you.
I live in the U.S., and I have seen the Grand Canyon too (magnificent, isn't it?).
It appears that you're focusing quite a lot on Native Indian landmarks and languages (just remember there is a lot more to America than that). I live in San Diego, where the Kumeyaay Indians lived. There still are ruins and evidence scattered here, one time I found an arrowhead in my backyard! The language they spoke here is a mystery; there is no evidence of it.
I tried to include things that are not that obvious. So no Grand Canyon, Statue of Liberty or Mount Rushmore. Since the point of these posts is to introduce new languages, I felt that the Native American approach would be appropriate. I did consider including something about Ellis Island to emphasise the fact that the USA is a melting pot of cultures and languages. But I came to the conclusion that it may be seen as a political statement and left it out.
That is so cool! It would be cool to know the language of my ancestors.. I'm part Indian.
Um... I don't know! My parents haven't told me that. All I know is that my great (or great great) grandpa was a full Indian. My parents say I must have gotten a lot of Indian in me because I look like one. I have dark skin (I'm white), and I have really dark brown hair.
My great great grandma was full Indian (Native American) and I seem to have gotten some of the blood. I am very thankful for that fact because I have always loved Native American culture and art and I have a legitimate excuse to get involved.
Haha, yeah. I really don't know what tribe I'm from.
Great Post! I'm very interested in Native Languages and Culture and your post was very informative and I'm especially glad you threw in the part about the trail of tears so people can see what the people of those tribes had to go through. Thank you so much for posting and I hope we do get to see a Cherokee course soon. I have a big binder on the language and, though I'm not near fluent, I might be able to contribute a little bit, but it will take a while to memorize all the syllables since there are roughly 80 of them and to learn the complex grammar that makes the language so interesting. Well ᏩᏙ for a great post!
Thank you! I was so happy when I entered this one and found information about Native American/First Nation) history. ^_^
Aw, what a nice post! I hope Duo had fun during his visit, and did not have to pay too much in fees to visit Sedona.
Yes! I live in Oklahoma and my ancestry consists of Cherokee Indian heritage. I would love to learn Cherokee.
You might try learning a bit with Mango [you can access it through a public library] and the Cherokee Nation has free online classes that are open to the public.
Brilliant post! For once, I've already been to the country, but some of those (most of those) are places I've never been. And Cherokee is not a language I already speak. :-) That alphabet intrigues me. I already know a lot of the letters from the Latin and Cyrillic alphabets, but they've got completely different sounds here. And then there's plenty of completely new ones.