This year’s theme is “Language Is Culture”.
Language is culture is a sentiment echoed throughout Indian Country. Language of course means to communicate, but also reflects our thoughts, our environment, our world view and our culture.
In Wisconsin there are three language groups represented: Siouxan, Irouioan and Algonquian by the Ho-chunk, Oneida and Ojibwe/Potawatomi/Menominee languages respectively. Each is as distinctive from one another as German, Spanish and Celtic are from one another. The languages of the tribes have also influenced place names and commonly used words like the word moose.
This year we will provide opportunities to learn about our culture through our languages.
The students who attended Electa Quinney Institute Moshkine Summer Camp at UWM this summer designed a mobile game to highlight Ojibwe language and native presence in Milwaukee. The game asks players to move around the city, read questions related to certain locations and make decisions based on the 7 Grandfther Teachings and native ethics more broadly. As you play you learn about the city and one of the 5 languages still spoken here. During Indian Summer all of the locations will be on Indian Summer Event grounds. After Indian Summer a slightly different version will invite people to move around the entire city. To access the app go to the information booth or the EQI booth in the gathering area to scan the QR code. It is only available for Apple devices.