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Goldilocks & The Bears

Goldilocks still 2 credit Jimi L Kinistino

This interview between Karahkwenhawi (Zoe Leigh Hopkins) and Owennatekha (Brian Maracle) was conducted in conjunction with ZOE LEIGH HOPKINS’ Goldilocks tahnon Ohkwari (Goldilocks and the Bears) exhibition.

 

 

Goldilocks & The Bears

a Mohawk language film that turns the classical tale upside-down;

produced by the father-and-daughter team of

Karahkwenhawi (Zoe Leigh Hopkins, Director)

and

Owennatekha (Brian Maracle, Writer)

 

Brian Maracle is the principal instructor at Onkwawenna Kentyohkwa, an adult program that creates fluent Mohawk speakers on the Six Nations Grand River Territory in southern Ontario. Zoe Leigh Hopkins, his daughter, is a film-maker and the on-line program instructor at Onkwawenna.

 

This Interview was conducted in the Mohawk language on September 9, 2016.

English translation provided by Karonhyawake (Jeff Doreen)

 

Karahkwenhawi: Oh nontyé:ren tsi enwá:ton yohsnó:re ayonhrónkha’ne’ ne Kanyen’kéha ne Onkwawennáhne?

 

Owennatekha: Enkarihwè:seke akwé:kon takaterihwáthe’te’ oh nontyé:ren tsi enwá:ton ónhka’k sénha yohsnó:re ayonhrónkha’ne’ ne Kanyen’kéha tsi ní:yoht ne ronatya’kè:son. Nek tsi e’thóhtsi í:’i akathró:ri’ né:’e tsi yah teyethirihonnyén:nis, yah tetewátstha ne owennakwé:kon. Yah tetewátstha ne owennakwé:kon ayethirihónnyen. Tewátstha ne otskwahshón:’a ne káti enwá:ton ahoti’nikonhrayèn:ta’ne’ ne ronteweyenhstà:nes oh ní:yoht tayewennakhányon. Wáhi, teyotonhwentsyóhon ayonnonhtónnyon’ ne Kanyen’kéha. Yah tétewehre, yah teyákwehre ahonnonhtónnyon ne O’seronni’kéha táhnon tahatiwennaté:ni ne raoti’konhrakónhson. Yákwehre ahonnonhtónnyon’ ne Kanyen’kéha. Ne kén:ton tká:konte ahonnonhtónnyon’ ne Kanyen’kéha; ne kén:ton tsi ahoti’nikonhrayèn:ta’ne’ ne otskwa’shón:’a nè:ne yakwátstha aetewawennón:ni nè:ne tewátstha tayakwawennakhányons nè:ne tekyattíhen nè:ne sénha karihowá:nen tsi ní:yoht ne ó:ya. Táhnon ó:ni ne ó:nen ayethirihónnnyen ne kanáktakon tsi niwenhní:seres, yah teyakwátstha ne O’seronni’kéha. Yethirihonnyén:ni aóhskon ne Kanyen’kéha enhniserakwé:kon, wisk niwenhní:seres tsi niwén:tes táhnon sha’té:kon niwenhnì:take tsi niyóhseres ne teyohserà:ke nenkarihwè:seke. Táhnon né:’e tsyorì:wat ne ó:ya nè:ne wathró:ris oh nontyé:ren tsi ónhka’k yohsnó:re ayonhrónkha’ne, né:’e tsi tká:konte akarihwè:seke ayontéweyenhste’ ká:ron tsi niyó:re ayekwé:ni ayontá:ti’.

 

Zoe: Why is possible to quickly become a fluent Mohawk speaker at Onkwawenna?

 

Brian: It’ll take a long time for me to explain it all why someone could become fluent in Mohawk a little faster than others. But, I should talk about it that we don’t teach, we don’t use whole words, we don’t use whole words to teach. We use root words (morphemes) so that students can understand how to put words together. Right, it’s neccesary for them to think in Mohawk. We don’t want them to think in English and for them to translate in their minds. We want them to think in Mohawk. That means they have to think in Mohawk; that means that they would understand the various types of roots we use to create words, that we use to put sentences together, that are different, which is a bigger issue than others.

 

And as well, when we teach them in class during the day, we don’t use English. We teach them only in Mohawk all day long, five days a week, and eight months a year, for two years. And there is one other issue that talks about why someone would become fluent quickly; because one has to study for a long time before they are able to speak.

 

K: To náhe tahsatáhsawen ahsatéweyenhste’ ne Kanyen’kéha?

 

O: Yah othé:nen tekahrónkhahwe shikenekénhteron. Wáhi, áhsen ok nikawén:nake í:’i kewennayenteríhne shikenekénhteron, áhsen ok. Táhnon yah tetewakatáhsawe tsi kate’nyéntha akatéweyenhste tsi niyó:re kayé:ri niwáhsen wisk na’tewakohseriya’kòn:ne. Á:yenhre tsi ohstónha sénha nikarì:wes tsi ní:yoht ne tewáhsen niyohserà:ke tsi náhe.

 

Z: How long ago did you start studying Mohawk?

 

B: I wasn’t fluent at all when I was a teen. Yeah, I only knew three words when I was a teen. Only three. And I didn’t start trying to study until, oh until I was forty-five years old. That seems like that’s more than twenty years ago.

 

K: Shé:kon ken yónnhe ne onkwawén:na? To nihá:ti rontá:tis ne Kanyen’kéha, Ohswé:ken nón:we, kenh niwenhniseratényon?

 

O: Kenh niwenhniseratényon, tyoyanén:’en. Á:yenhre tsi ákta ne wisk niwáhsen nihá:ti ronhrónkha ne Kanyen’kéha táhnon ratikwényes ahontá:ti’ ne Kanyen’kéha. Táhnon yah tehonhrónkha, yah akwé:kon tehonhronkha’tsherí:yos. Nek tsi sénha nihá:ti rontá:tis ne Kanyen’kéha nón:wa tsi ní:yoht ne tewáhsen niyohserà:ke tsi náhe. Khé:re nón:wa sha’tehá:ti ronhrónhka ne Kanyen’kéha kenh wenhniseratényon tsi ní:yoht ne tewáhsen niyohserà:ke tsi náhe. Nek tsi eh shikahá:wi rotiksten’okón:’a ok rontá:tiskwe táhnon kenh wenhniseratényon é:so nihá:ti, é:so sénha nithotiyèn:sa’s, táhnon kwah tsi ok nón:we rontá:tis, róntstha ne onkwawén:na. Táhnon ó:ni rotiwirayèn:ta’s táhnon tóhkara nihá:ti shakotirihonnyén:nis ne shakotiyen’okón:’a ahontá:ti’ ne Kanyen’kéha né:’e tyotyerénhton raotiwén:na. É’tho káti á:yenhre tsi ohstónha sénha kawenna’shátste ne Kanyen’kéha nón:wa tsi niyohtòn:ne tewáhsen niyohserà:ke tsi náhe.

 

Z: Is our language still alive? How many people speak Mohawk at Six Nations these days?

 

B: These days, it depends. One would say that close to fifty people understand Mohawk and are able to speak Mohawk. And not all of them are proficiently fluent. But more people speak Mohawk now than twenty years ago. Probably the same number of people are fluent these days than there were twenty years ago. But back then only the old people spoke. And these days a lot of people, it’s a lot more young people. And they speak all over the place, they use our language. And they are having babies, and some people are teaching their children to speak Mohawk as their first language. Therefore it seems like Mohawk is a bit stronger of a language than it was twenty years ago.

 

K: Táhnon takhró:ri ne teyó:ya’ks aorihwà:ke nè:ne Goldilocks táhnon Ohkwá:ri yena’tónhkwa, wetyón:ni ne kí:ken teyó:ya’ks nè:ne tahonnó:ya’ke tóhkara ní:kon film festivals, í:’i takanónhton’ táhnon í:se wahshyá:ton’. Oh nontyé:ren tsi wahsate’nikonhrí:sa’ ahshyá:ton ne thí:ken oká:ra?

 

O: Wà:kehre’ ayakyón:ni’ ne teyó:ya’ks nè:ne ronatya’kè:son ahonterò:roke. Táhnon wà:kehre’ ronatya’kè:son nè:ne ronteweyénhstha ahotiya’takénha tsi ronteweyénhstha; ahotiya’takénha sénha aontyesénhake ahontá:ti’. É’tho káti e’thóhtsi ohstón:ha enwatyesénhake ne oká:ra, e’thóhtsi ohstónha enwatyesénhake ne owenna’shón:’a nè:ne kaká:rakon. Táhnon ó:ni wà:kehre’ ahonon’wéhskwen’ ahonterò:roke’, wà:kehre ahonthsté:rihste’. É’tho káti teyotonhwentsyóhon, óhstónha í:’i takté:ni ne oká:ra ne káti enwá:ton sénha ayohsteríhstake. Táhnon ó:ni ne ó:nen wa’tekté:ni’ oh nihoti’nikonhrò:ten ne ohkwá:ri kahwá:tsire í:’i wa’kheyanonhtónnyon’ ne onkwehón:we, wáhi, nè:ne tsi ní:yoht nihotirihò:ten. Né:’e tsi e’thóhtsi ahoti’nikonhro’ténhake. Oh ní:yoht akì:ron ne kí:ken? Wà:kehre ahoti’nikonhro’ténhake sha’teyohtòn:ne nè:ne shakotihsot’okón:’a nè:ne ronatohétston.

 

Z: And tell me about the movie called Goldilocks and The Bears. We made this movie that they would show at a few film festivals. I directed it and you wrote it. Why did you decide to write that story?

 

B: I wanted us to make a movie that others would watch. And I wanted it to help some students in their studies. To help them to speak easier. Therefore it should be an easier story, there should be easier words in the story. And I also wanted them to enjoy watching it, I wanted them to laugh. Therefore I needed to change the story a bit so that it would be funnier. And also when I changed the bear family’s mindsets I thought of native people, right, their culture and ways, because that’s the way their mindsets should be. How do I say this? I wanted their mindsets to be the same as their deceased grandparents.

 

K: Táhnon takhró:ri ne Youtube aorihwà:ke. Oh nahò:ten ó:ya enwá:ton ayonterò:roke eh nón:we nè:ne wetyón:ni. Oh ní:yoht enwá:ton’ ayetshén:ri’ ne Onkwawenna Kentyohkwa a’are’kó:wa táhnon Youtúbehne?

 

O: Á:yenhre tsi ákta ne wisk niwáhsen ní:kon teyó:ya’ks nè:ne ronteweyénhstha Onkwawenna raotityóhkwa nè:ne wahonnón:ni’ táhnon enwá:ton ónhka’k ayonterò:roke’ ne Youtúbehne. Táhnon é’tho nón:we enwá:ton ayetshén:ri’ ne Onkwawenna Kentyohkwa Youtube channel. Táhnon ó:ni yonkwanáktayen ne a’are’kó:wa nè:ne www.onkwawenna.info tsi nón:we enwá:ton ayetshén:ri’ ne ó:ya tsyorì:wat nè:ne Onkwawenna aorihwà:ke.

 

Z: And tell me about Youtube. What else could you watch there that we made? How could you find Onkwawenna Kentyohkwa on the internet and on Youtube?

 

B: It seems like Onkwawenna students made close to fifty videos that you could watch on Youtube. And you could find them there on the Onkwawenna Kentyohkwa Youtube channel. And also we have a site on the internet at www.onkwawenna.info where you could find other things about Onkwawenna.

 

K: Táhnon. Oh nahò:ten sanonhtónnyon né:’e tsi tetenihthárha ne Kanyen’kéha táhnon skáhne yonkeniyó’tens aetenón:ni’ ne teyó:ya’ks nè:ne aóhskon Kanyen’kéha?

 

O: Akwah í:ken tsi wakatshennón:ni, akwáh í:ken, né:’e tsi enwá:ton ónhka’k ó:ya í:’i tayakenihthá:ren’ aóhskon ne Kanyen’kéha. Táhnon wakatonnháhere né:’e tsi ne kheyén:’a enwá:ton tayakenihthá:ren. Wakateryèn:tare tsi é:so nihá:ti ronhronkha’tsherí:yos shé:kon ronnónnhe nón:wa ne Kanyen’kehakà:ke nè:ne yah é’tho thayekwé:ni. Yah thaón:ton tahnihthá:ren ne shakotiyen’okón:’a. Táhnon akwáh í:ken tsi yo’nikonhráksa’t. Táhnon akwáh í:ken tsi wakatonnháhere né:’i tsi í:’i aetenikwé:ni. Táhnon sénha wakatshennón:ni né:’e tsi enwá:ton skáhne ayonkeniyó’teke, ne káti enwá:ton aetenón:ni ne teyó:ya’ks, kahyatonhsera’shón:’a, ok nahò:ten nè:ne a’are’kó:wa akénhake, ne káti enwá:ton ónhka’k ó:ya á:yontste’ ne káti enwá:ton ahonwatiya’takénha’ sénha ahonhrónkha’ne’ ne onkwawén:na.

 

Z: And. What do you think about you and I speaking Mohawk and working together making movies all in Mohawk?

 

B: I’m really happy, really, because I can speak with someone else all in Mohawk. And I’m excited because it’s my daughter that I will be able to speak with. I know that a lot of very fluent people that are still alive in Mohawk Territory that can’t do that. They can’t speak with their children. And it’s really sad. And I’m really excited that you and I are able to. And I’m happier that you and I can work together, that we can make movies, books, things that could be on the internet, so that someone else could use it, in order for it to help them to become more fluent in our language.

 

K: Wa’tkonnonhwerá:ton.

O: Yo.

Z: Thank you.

B: You’re welcome.