I’ve had the heck of a time trying to get full-text access to this fascinating letter read into the record of the Senate Journal of the Legislature of the State of Washington!
So I’ll try and transcribe it from the small snippet view above. But there’s an English translation provided, which I’m not finding access to. (I must need more coffee yet…)
It involves a Captain Roeder and a Mr. Eldridge, and I’d like to track down more details about those two people. Can you find out more?
The Chinuk Wawa here is extremely interesting. Everything about it suggests it is genuine “old-time pioneer” Jargon, learned early in life from talking with Native people. The unique spellings (like clawhowya), certain word choices (like stick kulakula ‘forest birds’ vs. chuck kalakala ‘waterfowl), pronunciation clues (like gada ‘how; a way to’ instead of the frequent kahta)…these add up to a really neat document.
I’ve asterisked words I’m unsure of, like the word/name Olf*…I suspect that one may have been elip ‘more’.
Nowitka Willie alta chacko delate clawhowya[,] canaway okok illihe halo stick
Willie has really gotten miserable nowadays, this whole country has no forest
kulakula wake siah halo chuck kalakala[,] copet tenas hiyu mowich[,] pe ancutty
birds [and] almost no waterfowl, just a few deer, but in the past
spose nika tenas man Olf* hiyu canaway icta. Mika cumtux ancuty spose ocok
when I was a boy there were [more?] of everything. You know, back when the
Boston illihe checko ict takamonic[.] alka kilipy copa stejace canamoxt Captain
USA began, a hundred [years ago]. Now, go back to the islands with Captain
Roeder pe moxt yaca tenas copa tenas aias boat pe canoway ict polakly nesika
Roeder and his two kids in a good-sized boat, and every evening we
midlite copa Swinomish Slough pe wake gada nesika sleep[,] ocok tyee chuck
are on Swinomish Slough and we can’t sleep, those big water-
kulakula hiyu wa wa quack quack quack pe ocok geese wa wa honk honk pe
fowl are going quack quack quack and those geese are going honk honk and
tenas alta [….] ocok Kulakula pe yaka clataway[.] Oh delate cocka spose hiyas musket
a little [while?] now […] those birds and he leaves. Oh it’s just as if a big gun
poo[,] clonas […]
had shot, maybe […]
That’s what I’ve got so far.
What will you find to help out?
Both the original document and some biographical info on Eldridge and Roeper will help to solidify this fascinating picture!
I had just come to the door of the accessible room, one of those separate from either the men's or women's bathroom, when the door opened. A non-disabled man stepped out of the washroom and as soon as he saw me he was full of apologies. But none was necessary, he was a transgender man and I knew that for him, this bathroom meant the same as it did for me, a safe place to go when you need to go. It broke my heart that he couldn't simply go to the bathroom that matched his gender. I don't know why he made the choice he did, safety probably, but there may have been other reasons as well.
He was explaining that he knew the washroom was primarily for disabled people but that he had chosen to use the washroom because, and here his voice faltered. Just for a moment he couldn't speak. Just for a moment I saw how hard the world he lived in was. Just for a moment I got a glimpse of the weight of prejudice that he carried on his shoulders. Just for a moment.
All I said was, "The best thing about these bathrooms is that the toilet doesn't care who pees in it." He looked at me, and I knew he saw a cisgender man of a seasoned age, disabled or not, he couldn't predict how I would see him or react to him being in 'my' bathroom.
But it's not my bathroom.
And I wanted him to know that. I know what it's like to have people deny me the space I need. I know what it's like for people to wish me away from public space at all. Disability reveals people's character almost instantly. It's possible to really learn the depth of people's prejudice and anger at the mere idea of difference. So I don't understand what he experiences on a day to day basis but I know what I do - and that gives hint enough.
He thanked me for understanding. I thanked him for his thanks but turned it down. "The world would be a better place if we all just learned to share space, don't you think? That's all I did, and you don't have to thank me for it."
"The toilet doesn't care, does it?" he said and laughed a bit.
"Well, when I sit on it, it complains a little," I said, "but no, it doesn't care."
"Take care of yourself," he said.
"You too," I said.
My the world, one day, be safe for all of us.
I took this shot of Ilona when I went to visit her in Provincetown a few weeks ago. Ilona made her polka dot skirt from an old bathrobe, her necklace is a vizor flipped upside down, and she customized her shoes by painting intricate patterns and swirls in silver and blue paint. At 97, Ilona also continues to swim and paint everyday. Lately she has been busy with signings for her magical book of wisdom and poetry. If you haven’t already checked it out you can find copies HERE.
For the past few days, social media networks have been filled with the #metoo hashtag. The current campaign calls women to post #metoo in their social media networks, as a way to show how prevalent the problem of sexual violence is across the board. Alyssa Milano, credited with starting the current campaign, explained about the hashtag, “so we might give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem.” Milano is being credited with creating the hashtag as part of the response to Harvey Weinstein’s multiple sexual attacks on Hollywood women; however the hashtag was actually created a decade ago by Tarana Burke. Burke is a Black woman activist, blogger and consultant, who developed #metoo in an attempt to highlight the ways in which Black women experience abuse and sexual violence and to call for a movement.
#metoo has produced a variety of reactions around the world. From solidarity, story-sharing and calls to legislation, to concern, dismissal, anger and re-traumatization. Reactions have further included criticisms of #metoo as an example of how white feminisms coopt Black women’s work. Queer folks have also inquired, how can we talk about sexual violence experiences among LGBTIQ people without erasing men’s violence against women? In addition, survivors have been vocal, including in sharing concerns on why #metoo does not represent some of them. #metoo has also sparked a social media conversation among some cisgender men in the form of the #HowIWillChange hashtag, along with pieces reflecting on racialized masculinity and what it means for cis-men to hold each other accountable. Further, it has raised questions about the spaces that may or may not exist for men who are survivors to share their experiences.
Muslim engagement with the hashtag further highlights the ways in which Muslim women experience sexual violence at the intersection of their identities. Moreover, it has sparked reflections on the challenges that some second and third-generation Muslims face in terms of discussing sexual violence and the ways in which the topic is still considered taboo among some Muslim communities (although not solely). It has also shown the tensions that exist within feminist and women’s movements when discussing sexual violence and the experiences of racialized and Muslim women. Some of the discussions have further reiterated that no type of clothing or “modest attire” protects Muslim women, and otherwise, from sexual violence. And, of course, some Muslim men, have also seen this discussion as an opportunity to remind Muslim women that they do not believe in sexual violence or harassment, while using all sorts of “religious” arguments to justify their statements.
MMW’s Nicole, Anneke and Eren discuss their perspectives on #metoo.
Eren: I can’t lie. Seeing my social media networks inundated with #metoo was difficult, not because I am not aware that 99% of my friends and family who are racialized women or non-binary folks have been harassed or/and assaulted at some point in time. But because it was a reminder that there are no spaces free of these experiences, especially for racialized women and non-binary folks. It is all over the place all the time (unless apparently you are a cis man, and you do not know how big the problem is *eye roll*). Three weeks ago Muslim women were faced with a discussion over spiritual abuse and sexual violence, and we continue to do the work and have these experiences all the time. It makes me wonder, does it ever end?
Nicole: One of my issues with the #metoo campaign is that, you know, maybe I don’t want to talk about my baggage on somebody else’s terms. I’ve talked about my trauma, divorce, harassment in a lot of other places many times, but always under my terms and when I wanted to. My second issue is- why should I have to out myself yet again as a trauma survivor just to “raise visibility” so dudes “get it?” Haven’t I done enough emotional labor (answer: yes). So I didn’t participate in any of the #metoo stuff (except here, and a few retweets) because I am TIRED. Tired of constantly having to explain stuff to people who at this point are willfully not getting it. I have no problem with and no judgment for the people who did participate- I’m just not feeling it this round. For me the context is greater- I have a few male friends who are lazy communicators who need stuff spoon-fed. There’s only so much one can give in terms of emotional labor before the heart gets heavy. And my heart is heavy. I feel like throwing the male mantra back at them, “you should have just asked!”
Anneke: I find it so convenient. Once again women have to become vulnerable to prove sexual harassment is an issue. We all know it is. All our lives are affected by it. We are told not to speak a certain way to not invite “that attention”. Not to dress a certain way. Not to go out alone in the dark. Not to pursue certain careers. The list goes on and on. And when it happens, we do not raise hell, as we should. We rethink our actions, and make excuses. Maybe he did not understand me. Maybe he is just too young to “get it”. Maybe I should have been better prepared. Maybe I am just too vulnerable. Too naive.
Eren: And well, for me to be honest, it is mind blowing that it is only through the movements that white women coopt (in this case from Black women like Tarana Burke) that our experiences of sexual violence get legitimized. It takes a bunch of white Hollywood women for this to even be considered “viral.” Like Nicole, I did not quite participate in the #metoo stuff because when I opened Facebook, I was reminded by my Indigenous teachers, friends and family members that 1) as Indigenous women and non-binary folks our experiences deeply connected to the way colonial power relations still work; 2) we are often more vulnerable because we are more likely to be poor and live in places where classist violence plays a role; 3) as racialized people we can’t separate the ways in which white supremacy functions from our experiences; and finally, 4) for some Indigenous women and non-binary people, as well as other racialized folks, outing oneself in social media can be actually quite dangerous. Maybe you are being harassed by your abuser, maybe you have to be friends with them online, maybe they are family, maybe they are your employer… who is going to help you when shit hits the fan? And I think that’s and experience that some Indigenous Muslim women share, and other racialized Muslim women have.
Anneke: Absolutely. And next year, the same thing will pop up on my timeline. I will once again be shocked. Shocked at how many women, and people, have experienced this. How young they were. How vulnerable they were. The shame. The silence. The number of times. I know I am that statistic too. And so are my young daughters. I was unable to protect them, and I am aware that I will be unable to protect them in the future. But I refuse to believe that this is just a risk of being alive, something that just happens a lot. The question is: what can we really do about it?
Eren: The sad part is nothing shocks me anymore. I think I stopped being shocked when I was 16. But as you say, what can we really do? For starters I think, particularly in the context of Muslim communities, there is a need to create (and fund!) safer spaces for Muslim women and non-binary folks to have healing conversations and action-guided conversations. For those who are able to, there is also a responsibility to ask more from our communities. We can no longer accept sheikhs, imams and chaplains staying silent, protecting each other or making a token acknowledgements. We have to find ways to fight spiritual abuse. We cannot have khutbas where Muslim women are told that clothing will save them from rape! Or speeches justifying homophobia. That in itself is violence. Also, cis-Muslim men need to be accountable not only for the violence, but for the attitudes surrounding how that violence permeates women and non-binary folks’ lives. Muslim men, what does it take for you to believe that sexual violence is an issue and to educate yourself?, and what is your commitment to Muslim women, to Muslim non-binary folks, to racialized women?
What are your thoughts?
Two days ago Joe and I got on a plane and flew to New York City for a little bite of the Big Apple
He had work and me too, but we still had the time to make the most of it. We went to the park, and the Met, and the Guggenheim. (I have no idea why those pictures are blurry, they aren’t before I upload them but I don’t have time to figure it out.)
I knit all of those places because I’m me. Nobody minded. As a matter of fact I wasn’t even the only knitter at the Met wandering around with a sock in hand. (I think it was a sock.)
4. They were on their way to Rhinebeck, which I am not.
5. I know. I’m bummed about it too, but this year I had a conflict, and I’ll be at Knit East. It will be the first time in more than a decade that I won’t be with my usual crew, but duty calls, and Knit East is awesome, and there will be a whole bunch of amazing knitters there too. Life is long. Next year will be Rhinebeck, with my wool as my witness.
6. The only problem remains that I usually buy a years worth of soap there, so I’m going to need a solution. (Makes note to self, arranging cross-border soap mule.)
I’m on my way home now, with a quick turnaround to St. John in the morning. I’m literally putting down one suitcase, sleeping, and picking up one I pre-packed before I left.
I almost went to a yarn store in NYC, but it was closed for a class. (One knitting teacher to another – I’d never interrupt your class. Not for anything.)
I ate at Dirt Candy. It was amazing. I had a tiny grilled pea taco. (And a lot of other stuff too.)
Human research subjects are all over popular media. Lab rats, guinea pigs, and even the obscure “Pharmer’s daughter” (From The Facility, 2012) all refer to people who participate in biomedical research as test subjects—often ingesting experimental drugs to test their toxicity or therapeutic effectiveness.
The clinical trial industry has decried the representations of human subjects in the media for being fantastical and overly dramatic. The concern is that portraying human subjects in a negative light hurts their ability to recruit participants, test experimental products, and profit from approved drugs.
But how are human research subjects actually portrayed?
In two new publications, my co-author Jill Fisher and I look at how human subjects are represented in popular entertainment media. We analyzed 65 television shows and films like Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, Grey’s Anatomy, The Facility and The Amazing Spiderman.
We find that human research subjects are predominately white men from lower socio-economic backgrounds. When women are represented, they are more likely to be shown being coerced into research (rather than enrolling for therapeutic or financial reasons).
2 Broke Girls is actually an outlier in this regard. In this show, Max and Caroline were not coerced but financially motivated to participate in clinical trials—or as Max likes to call it: “getting paid $500 to roll the side effect dice and hope it lands on hallucinations! [audience laughter]”
Indeed, films and shows did use fantastical and dramatic representations of side effects—from discussions of men growing breasts, limb regrowth, and fits of rage and violence—and death and injury were common. Most of these medical studies failed—and failed in spectacularly horrific or comedic ways.
While negative, this portrayal is not necessarily wrong or bad:
Importantly, negative outcomes of fictional medical research are not the same as negative depictions of science… There are real risks to research participants who enroll in medical studies as well as high rates of scientific failure (Fisher and Cottingham 2017:575–76).
While industry representatives may dislike portrayals for their inaccuracies, the fact that many clinical trials do fail and have serious potential to harm subjects cannot be absolved by painting subjects as “medical heroes” as some have tried (Peddicord 2012).
What do human subjects think of these portrayals?
We took the study further by looking at how human research subjects themselves use film and television to understand clinical trials. Surprisingly, the discussion of dramatic side effects were common among their responses. As one participant noted:
Like I never heard of this [clinical trials], and ‘They do what?!’ You know, you gonna grow an extra eye, you gonna grow, you-you know, you hear all these things, you know. – Rob
And yet, after they had participated in a clinical trial and saw that the more common side effects listed in the informed consent documents included dizziness, headaches, nausea, and fatigue, they became less concerned about the risks of clinical trials. Rather than scaring these participants away, representations in the media seemed to make the mundane and ordinary list of potential side effects (even cardiac issues!) appear even more acceptable.
We frame media portrayals and participant perspectives on the risks of clinical trials as collective and individual efforts to manage the anxieties surrounding the risks of experimental biomedical research. As a society, we have come to accept the fact that experimental research requires risking human welfare and comfort, but remain ambivalent about the idea that science is inherently good and linked to social progress.
Collectively, we manage this ambivalence by dehumanizing research subjects or indulging in tales of science gone wrong. At the individual level, research participants use media portrayals of “lab rats” and “guinea pigs” to manage the fears and anxieties of the research they undergo. No one has grown a third arm, had their penis shrink, or turned blue in a Phase I clinical trial, so it must not be too harmful…right?
Read More Here:
Cottingham, Marci D. and Jill A. Fisher. Forthcoming. “From Fantasy to Reality: Managing Biomedical Risk Emotions in and through Fictional Media.” Health, Risk & Society 1–17.
Fisher, Jill A. and Marci D. Cottingham. 2017. “This Isn’t Going to End Well: Fictional Representations of Medical Research in Television and Film.” Public Understanding of Science 26(5):564–78.
Peddicord, Doug. 2012. “Television’s Assault on Medical Research.” Huffington Post.
Marci Cottingham is an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Amsterdam. Her research focuses on the sociology of emotion, social inequalities, healthcare, and biomedical risk. More on her research (including the two papers discussed here) can be found on her website.
A couple of persistent stories about Chinuk Wawa.
From “The Story of Metlakahtla” by Henry S. Wellcome (London: Saxon & Co., 1887). It’s a narrative of how the missionary Reverend William Duncan came to influence some British Columbia Tsimshian people to found a new Christian community in Alaska.
(Image credit: Wikipedia)
Our first excerpt documents Mr. Duncan’s procurement of a Chinook Jargon translator.. Might typical for the era, it leaves details unclear. But we know from other sources that hereditary chief Arthur Wellington Clah and Duncan shared no language more robustly than the Jargon.
Digressing for a moment, let me share that Clah kept a diary, which was quite a rare thing among BC Native people so early in the history of contact. It’s a wonderful document of frontier life on the Coast, and I love it even more because it’s written in Clah’s colloquial English, distinct from any standard variety. There’s Chinuk Wawa to be found in those pages, and I look forward to reading it now that it’s published.
Mr. Duncan carped about limitations that he perceived in Chinook Jargon — which is a subject that’s open to debate — but I can’t fault him for laboring to learn Tsimshian and speak to the people in their own language. He wanted to circumvent the helplessness that comes from relying on translators, which he colorfully illustrates with an oft-repeated chestnut about another missionary’s Jargon interpreter…
Without a moment’s
delay he secured the services of [Arthur Wellington] Clah, one of the
most intelligent Tsimshean natives, to assist him in
learning their language in his quarters within the
walls of the fort. No white man having yet mas-
tered their tongue, all intercourse with these people
had been through the medium of the Chinook jar-
gon, and, a sign language common to the coast.
The jargon, however, was too incomplete for teach-
ing purposes, hence, Mr. Duncan, saw that to reach
the inner life of the people, he must gain a thorough
knowledge of the language, in which they formu-
lated their thoughts.
With great patience and rare ingenuity, by means
of signs, gestures, and objects, Mr. Duncan soon
secured from Clah a fair vocabulary of Tsimshean
words, which he wrote down phonetically, and as
soon as possible began to construct sentences. At
the end of several months he was able to write out
a simple address, explanatory of his mission among
them. However, in the meantime, through Clah, he
had already conveyed to the Indians, the information
that a white man had come, not, to barter, or get
gain, but to bring them a message from the white
man’s God, and to teach them the knowledge of
those things in which the white man, was superior
to the red man. This naturally excited the curi-
osity of the Indians, and finally, when Mr. Duncan,
ventured out among them, in spite of the warning
of the officers of the fort, he was warmly received
by the chiefs and people, who regarded him, as some
In deference to their tribal customs, Mr. Duncan,
found it necessary to speak to the people of each
of the nine Tsimshean tribes, at the houses of their
respective chiefs, during the same day. In some
instances, when Mr. Duncan, saw that the people
gave more attention to- his buttons, or the cut of
his garments, than to his words; he repeated his
address until they did listen and comprehend his
Mr. Duncan, had not ventured to address them
until he felt certain he could make himself clearly
understood. He had made it a special study to
acquire their picturesque and expressive figures of
speech. Literal translations into Indian tongues
are very barren, and often extremely droll. One
dignitary of the Church, who began his address to
a coast tribe — ” Children of the forest ” — was not a ♦
little confused when he found that his interpreter
could only render it, in the Chinook jargon, Tanass
man cupah hyyu stick — signifying, little men among
many sticks or stumps. (pages 9-10)
Another of the themes that recur when you’re researching Chinook Jargon is an association of the pidgin with hand gestures. This is mentioned above, and the following puts it into Duncan’s own words:
I begged that I might be permitted to
live in a stockade that had been erected by some white men
up there for trade ; I begged to live there until I could
speak the Indian language. I was given that privilege, and
for eight months I did nothing but study the language, for I
did not believe in mutilating the Gospel by going and talk-
ing to them in broken English, or in Chinook jargon, as I
wanted to give it to them in their native language. I there-
fore for eight months did little, or nothing but to keep my-
self close in the stockade with an Indian, who did not know
English. By the acting of words I got a good deal of his
language from him, and in eight months I was able to
preach. (page 385)
I can’t count how many times I’ve read, and heard in oral-history recordings, and been told to my face that hand gestures were frequent among Jargon users. Nothing has come to light to suggest a systematized sign language, but still it’s noteworthy that people saw fit to comment on this tendency. I mean, we all gesture when we talk, but we’re mostly unconscious of it. We have a little more awareness of ourselves and others waving our hands around when talking with those we don’t share a language with (thus the “jabbering and gesticulating foreigners” trope). But sain, as the word is in Kamloops Chinuk Wawa, came to be seen by many as an expected adjunct of Jargon.
Little guys in the trees and a bunch of hand-waving, there you go, two old Chinook saws!
Heck of a story.
“Parks and Redwoods, 1919-1971: Oral history transcript” is “an interview” of Newton Bishop Drury (1889-1978) “conducted by Amelia Roberts Fry and Susan Schrepfer. It’s at the Bancroft Library of the University of California – Berkeley.
(Image credit: Wikipedia)
There’s a swell portrait of NBD in the book by none other than renowned photographer Ansel Adams, but I like the above image with Marian Anderson and Eleanor Roosevelt.
This fella’s dad, Wells Drury, grew up in Oregon at just the right time. Born September 16, 1851 in New Boston, Illinois, he lived there a grand total of two months before the family upped and emigrated to Oregon Territory, and eventually to Washington Territory.
Which is why the son was able to recount some interesting family lore about territorial times. His dad Wells was appointed by the President as a Chinuk Wawa interpreter–at age 10.
This is where it helps to be a critical reader…
The claim that Wells interpreted at Isaac Stevens’s Medicine Creek Treaty negotiations has to be mistaken (he would’ve been 3 years old), but maybe it’s a family memory of Wells’s stepfather Elbert Elder helping out on the sidelines there. On the official document only Benjamin F. Shaw is listed in that capacity, but a number of other whites present knew Jargon and are known to have assisted informally.
The transcript claims young Wells went on to interpret in a war with the Warm Springs (Oregon) Indians. If this refers to the 1877 Nez Perce war, it’s plausible. Otherwise, it’s likely another time-ravaged memory of Elbert Elder from the several 1850’s Indian wars in the Pacific Northwest.
Abe Lincoln and General US Grant, who we’ve seen on my website previously, show up:
From Indian Interpreter to Printer
Drury: One of the earlier experiences of my father up in
Washington Territory, where they moved from Oregon,
was as an Indian interpreter when he was ten years
old during the Lincoln administration, during negotia-
tions for the Medicine Creek Treaty.
Fry: That was pretty young, wasn’t it, to be an employee of
the Federal government?
Drury: Yes. His foster father, Elbert Elder, had been a
neighbor of Abraham Lincoln in their youth in Sangamon
County, Illinois. When Lincoln was elected, Mr. Elder
wrote to him; I suppose he asked for a government job
or something he could do. And having confidence in him,
Abraham Lincoln appointed him as interpreter to the
tribes that speak the Chinook jargon; they are along the
Washington coast. He was asked to name deputies. My
father as a boy had mastered the Chinook speech; they
Drury: called it jargon. It was a sort of pidgin English, I
think, or at least it was a rather elementary language.
Elder wrote that he would like to appoint his stepson,
who was then about ten years old. And after consider-
able argument about it he was appointed.
Fry: Do you have any letters now in your files about that?
Drury: I have a copy of the letter that my father wrote to a
cousin, Marion Drury, in 1872. It was addressed from
Monmouth, Oregon, and it gave the history of this ap-
Fry: I was wondering if there would be any Abraham Lincoln
letters in the files.
Drwry: I don’t think so. One of the unfortunate things is
that in the Berkeley fire, I believe in 1924, my
father’s scrapbook, which had a tremendous amount of
interesting material, was burned along with the other
family records. The things we have now were either
gathered afterwards from his sisters or were in the
files of the Drury Advertising Company in San Francisco.
Fry: That’s an argument for getting these things put in an
archives library as soon as possible.
Drury: That convinced me, yes.
Fry: How did your father happen to learn this Chinook jargon?
Drury: Oh, I think by playing with the Indian boys.
Fry: There was a lot of free socializing, then, between the
Indian families and the white?
Drury: Oh, I imagine so, yes. I don’t think they were one of
the most highly developed tribes. One of the things I
remember was that my father had a hole in the muscles of
one of his legs which he said came from having been struck
by a spear that some angry Indian had thrown at him. It
wasn’t an Indian war, but it was a quarrel and he got
Drury: this wound. Something had happened that the Indian
didn’t like. Maybe he thought he hadn’t gotten a good
deal from the government, or something. Nothing
serious. I notice in these papers–I have no recollection
of my father talking about it [–] a letter from a Mr. Owen
to his friend or relative, a Mr. Pottol, telling the
fact that my father was engaged in some of the Indian
wars in the early days. This letter was addressed from
Oakland, California, to Mrs. Laura Leed Pottol’s father.
It says that “One of my boyhood associates, Wells Drury,
became a captain in the state militia, and was sent east
of the mountains to fight the Warm Springs Indians who
had started on the warpath. He knew enough to hold
their confidence and was quite influential in getting
the Indians to return to the reservation without a
fight . ”
Apropos of that, I remember my father talking about
his days in the militia, including a visit that they had
from General U.S. Grant when he was touring the West.
He mentioned the fact that they were in their best uni-
forms and all spruced up. Grant looked at him and he
said, “Young fellow, in all my military career I never
had as fine a uniform as you have.” (Laughter) Grant
wasn’t noted for his military spic and span qualities.
I think it happened up at Olynpia in Washington; that’s
where they had their headquarters for the Indian service. (pages 8-10)
Do any of my readers have family stories that involve Chinook Jargon?
I plan to have cover art by Ron Miller again, of which I will post a sneak peek in due course.
Still the final revision pass to go, plus waiting on comments from two test readers -- I really should wait for the latter before doing the former. I can occupy myself devising vendor-page copy while I wait, I suppose.
This e-publication thing is getting frighteningly fast, in part because a lot of little things which were baffling decisions or upward learning curves first round are now set templates which only need replicated.
I'm thinking e-pub in November, but we'll see. I had originally planned this as my winter project, but it got its legs under it in August and hardly stopped till FIN on Monday.
posted by Lois McMaster Bujold on October, 18
I'm staying in a wonderful hotel, with an amazing room and welcoming staff. The public washrooms though aren't so great. Many I can't get my chair in the stall and none are good for going number 2, for that I need to go to my room. I can make this work.
On our first day here, we checked in early and then used our time differently. Joe went to pick up beer, I went to the gym. The gym has some accessible equipment and I really wanted to get some real exercise in. I'd done about an hour work out and then had to go to the bathroom. The key card did not open the bathroom in the gym and I was afeared that it wouldn't work in the room either. I headed downstairs with a bit of urgency.
There were hundreds of people checking in and the line up were long. I knew from the morning the the concierge was able to check people in so I went to his desk. There were three people in front of me. I had to go to the bathroom, I couldn't use any of the public bathrooms and my key to my room wasn't working. I'm getting increasingly panicked.
The women in front of me all looked very nice. They all looked understanding. But they also looked tired from travel and that they'd been patiently waiting their turn. I had to fight down the urge to ask to just get my key card redone so I could go to my room and thus go to the bathroom which I really needed to do.
I don't like, and I know you won't believe this, talking about my bathroom needs with real, in the flesh, strangers. I don't like the idea of them thinking that I'm thinking that my need is bigger and more important than theirs. I don't like the possibility that they may think I'm using my disability to get to the head of the line. I don't like any of those things, but mostly I don't want to be thought a needy jerk, a man who puts himself before others.
So, I waited my turn. With moist eyes I told the concierge what it was I needed and it was fixed quickly and I was up in my room in moments. Thank heavens.
I've faced the bathroom issue pretty much every day since becoming disabled. It's the balancing act I'm wondering about. Do any of you have issues when needing something disability related, that non disabled people don't worry about - like bathroom access, and worrying about how to deal with the balance between your needs and the needs of others?
Socktober is still a thing over here. I had a brief dalliance with the beginnings of a shawl at Knit City, but it didn’t quite take hold, though it might have stood a chance but for Megan. My mum loved clothes shopping and did heaps of it for all of us, so I was trying to be a good grandmother, and asked her what Elliot needed. She answered that he could use a sleeper or two, and that she likes the ones with feet. I went shopping, and had trouble finding footed ones that would fit him. (Being of average weight for his age but of a rather diminutive stature, our wee lad is a bit of a square.) I bought the one footed one I could find, and two that didn’t have feet, and forked them over to Meg. When I did, she mentioned that the reason she likes the footed ones is because his little feet get so cold at night and then she said maybe he needed more booties or socks or something like that and I felt a feeling that must be exactly like the way sharks feel when they pour the buckets of chum in the water.
I went the knitter equivalent of bananas. It was all I could think of. Babies are enough to set me off, but the thought of a cold baby who could only be saved by knitting? Lunatic. I was a lunatic with wool. My grandson had cold feet and I was unstoppable. Hours later:
One pair with ribbed cuffs and a stockinette foot, and another pair where I kept the ribbing going on the top of the sock, and gave way to stockinette on only the bottom. (No pattern, though you can find lots on Ravelry if you look – wait, I did it for you. These ones by Kate Atherley look perfect.) The good news is that not only are his feet warm, they fit just fine:
Maybe a little big, but he’s growing fast, and they are apparently delicious.
The green ones especially.
(Image credit: YouTube)
For another seasonally appropriate article, turn out the lights and draw close as I tell you about…the Halloweena Indians.
On a cold day when white people were still outnumbered in the Oregon country…
Challouina or Halloweena are recorded by John Work in his journal for November and December, 1824 (previously mentioned). The expedition is now on the Black river making its way from the Chehalis river to Eld Inlet. Here they meet Indians and under date of December 1. Work narrates: “Since we have been here several of the Halloweena Indians from the neighboring village have visited us. Their mode of life, manners, language, etc., differ little from the Chihailis, indeed, they may be considered as a detached part of that tribe.” Wilkes, of the United States Exploring Expedition, 1841, describes them as the Sachal Indians. I. I. Stevens (Pac. Ry. Reports) mentions them as the Squaiaitl. (“Journal of Occurrences at Nisqually House, 1833“, ed. by Clarence Bagley, page 196)
Oh, that’s about it.
The Halloweena nation was a synonym for the Upper Chehalis.
Why do I mention it?
I’m waiting for you to catch on…
…Okay, I’ll let the cat out of the bag.
Halloweena was an early spelling of the Chinuk Wawa word that you may know better as x̣lúyma, hulloima, etc., meaning “different, other, strange”.
It’s as if the people who worked and lived around the Hudson’s Bay Company Fort Nisqually referred in Jargon to the nearby Upper Chehalis Salish folks, who spoke a different language from the local southern Lushootseed, “the other Indians”.
Spooky how similar it is to the word Halloween, eh?
There’s no connection whatsoever, sorry kid. Don’t soap my windows!
This weekend I was at the annual conference for the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, where they held a memorial for sociologist Peter Berger. I thought of Berger and Luckmann’s classic The Social Construction of Reality in the airport on the way home. Whenever people say ritual is dying out, or socially constructed things “aren’t real,” I think of airport lines.
There are always two lines, but rarely any separation other than a sign like this. If you’re lucky, you can catch the gate agent making a big show of opening the “general boarding” lane, but everyone ends up at the same scanner right past the sign (usually only a minute or two after the “elite” passengers). From Berger and Luckmann (the Anchor Books paperback edition):
Evan Stewart is a Ph.D. candidate in sociology at the University of Minnesota. You can follow him on Twitter.
The developing human being not only interrelates with a particular natural environment, but with a specific cultural and social order which is mediated to him by the significant others who have charge of him (p. 48).
The symbolic universe orders and thereby legitimates everyday roles, priorities, and operating procedures…even the most trivial transactions of everyday life may come to be imbued with profound significance (p. 99).
Hi, I'm here looking up at you, wanna play? Wanna play?
No, bad penis, bad penis, I'm in public.
Come on, come on, it will feel good. You like to play.
No, stop it leave me alone.
Now that I'm nearly 65 the conversations go like this:
Gotta pee, gotta pee, gotta pee.
I'm in the line up for security, wait a minute.
No, no waiting, gotta pee, gotta pee.
Alright I'm through, I'm on my way to the toilet.
NOW. How about I go a little now?
NO Wait ... Shit.
This, this, they never taught me in sex education. This, this is why you need to learn about your body across the lifespan, not just when you are young. Excuse me while I go change.
A sort of speculative piece for you today…
(Image credit: TodayIFoundOut.com)
tsiĥ-tomtom ‘shrewd’ is in Father St Onge’s Chinuk Wawa dictionary manuscript of 1892. That’s literally ‘sharp-heart’. In modern Grand Ronde tribal spelling it would be tsíx-tə́mtəm, although it’s not in their dictionary. This phrase got me thinking.
It brings to mind the north Idaho tribal name “Coeur d’Alene“, famously said to come from French “heart of an awl” and connoting that Salish group’s acuity in bargaining. Hmm.
A question I hadn’t considered before — exactly who called the tribe that? This is not the native Coeur d’Alene name for themselves…in their Salish language it’s snchitsu’umsh. And most of their neighbors know them by that name. Which has nothing to do with hearts; it means ‘the ones who were discovered’.
- Could CdA (as we sometimes say locally, when we’re abbreviating what’s locally pronounced “Korda Lane”) be a translation from a Native metaphor?
- Or did French-Canadians in the fur trade use such expressions?
- Both could be the case, of course.
I have not found such an expression elsewhere in Chinuk Wawa, having searched the usual pile of reference materials. That’s a little surprising because the Jargon famously has a lot of idioms involving kinds of ‘heart’. I realize they’re not cross-indexed under tə́mtəm in your Grand Ronde dictionary so maybe you haven’t quite grasped the range of its uses, so here are some for you:
- sáx̣ali-tə́mtəm literally ‘high-heart’ ‘feeling good, in good humor; awake’ (Kamloops usage: ‘arrogant’)
- sík-tə́mtəm literally ‘hurting-heart’ ‘sorry, sad’
- ɬúsh-tə́mtəm literally ‘good-heart’ ‘be glad, in good humor, happy’
- iht tomtom literally ‘one heart’ (Kamloops) ‘in agreement; resolved’
- mokst tomtom literally ‘two hearts’ (Kamloops) ‘dubious, doubt’
- ayu tomtom literally ‘many hearts’ (Kamloops) ‘confused’
- iktas tomtom literally ‘belongings-heart’ (Kamloops) ‘materialistic’
There are plenty more. Not just in the Jargon, but in the Native languages.
I suspect a lot of the Native “heart” metaphors escaped documentation in the various languages. For example, just three or so of these are to be found under ‘think ( /heart)’ in the Upper Chehalis Salish dictionary:
- ‘brave person’ (literally ‘big/grown-up heart’)
- ‘bad character’ (‘bad heart’)
But the languages that we have anything like actual usage data from confirm that ‘heart’ metaphors were common. Look in Boas’s [Lower Chinookan language] “Chinook Texts” book, searching for ‘heart’, and you see quite a variety of these expressions (I’m just giving literal translations to keep this simple):
- ‘not good Bluejay his heart’ (page 12)
- ‘tired gets my heart’ (page 12)
- ‘my heart lonesome it got’ (page 22)
- ‘dry became his heart’ (page 71)
- ‘liberal his heart’ (page 267)
Could coeur d’alène have been a set expression beforehand in French? I’m not the expert but I put in some effort searching Google with the language settings changed to French, and I come away with the impression that the phrase first shows up in reference to the tribe. Maybe one of my francophone readers can contribute some wisdom.
Well, I haven’t definitively proven anything with this exercise, but my contribution today is a hypothesis that “Coeur d’Alene” is more a Native metaphor than a French one.
Iris: We’ve been together 70 years. We met through friends in the city and I got him a date with my boyfriend’s sister. Then, I liked him and I called him up for dinner, and three months later and we were engaged. It was love at first sight.
The secret to staying together for so long is an attraction that starts in the very beginning and stays there.
We haven’t had it that difficult, we never really fight. We’ve never had a big fight. Have we?
Iris: No, never. We get along really well.
Leonard: Yeah, I do what she wants!
Iris: My father told him the secret to a good marriage with me would be to do everything I want (chuckles), always say yes, and he does! It’s a long time. I’m more in love than ever because we are together all the time, we are never apart. We are absolutely always together and we really never been apart.
This post is related, but only slightly, to the Nouman Ali Khan (NAK) scandal (in which a religious leader used his power to harass and threaten women, as MMW explored in a recent roundtable). I don’t want to talk about NAK, but I do want to talk about the idea of spiritual abuse, a concern which has come to light as a result of the actions of this particular spiritual leader.
Across social media spiritual abuse has been explained as a spiritual leader’s use of their power in the community to control and manipulate followers. AltMuslim recently published a helpful piece on how to recognize a spiritual abuser. They write:
“Spiritual abusers leverage religion as a way of securing personal power over our consciousness. They use God as the basis for their claims against our will, and use the community’s needs as a claim against our rights.”
Additionally they state:
“An imposter or spiritual abuser, on the other hand, is intensely and methodically dedicated to the cultivation of an image, a disguise, a false personality — not necessarily to perhaps conceal their true selves from others but worse, to control them.”
All this is true and as a community we would be wise to heed their words of advice. However, I believe this definition and conceptualization of spiritual abuse is incomplete. In fact, I believe that by omitting other forms of spiritual abuse, our efforts to combat the type of spiritual abuse outlined in the AltMuslim article, will not be useful.
Spiritual abuse is using religion to control or manipulate others’ behaviours and thoughts, and it can be done by anyone. It is using religion to instill a type fear and guilt in others that leads to self-hatred or self-shame. Spiritual abuse occurs when one’s freedom to choose their relationship with God is discouraged and replaced with the imposition of another’s views of how that relationship must be. Spiritual abuse occurs when we use religion to oppress others.
Spiritual abuse can happen when a woman is told that she may choose to either wear the hijab or displease Allah. Spiritual abuse occurs when a non-fasting individual is told they are weak. Spiritual abuse occurs when a Muslim with a mental illness is told their iman (faith) is weak. Spiritual abuse occurs when a wife is told that if she refuses to have sex with her husband she is angering God. Spiritual abuse occurs when children are told that if they misbehave God will punish them. Spiritual abuse occurs when a person who has chosen to become Muslim is, implicitly or explicitly, told they are not “real Muslims.” Spiritual abuse occurs when we are told to truly fear God. And by fear I don’t mean ‘respect’ or ‘obey.’ I mean be afraid, be very afraid of God.
So, can we have an honest discussion on spiritual abuse and how pervasive it truly is in our communities? Can we talk about the daily forms of spiritual abuse that occur? Can we talk about the daily forms of spiritual abuse which have become so normalized that when more extreme forms of spiritual abuse occur our first inclination as a community is to deny they’re even happening, or to blame the victim (because, in case you didn’t notice, NAK has been spiritually abusing women for a long time)?
These questions may seem simple, but we need answers to them. We have too many victims/survivors of spiritual abuse in our communities.
I don't want to sit by you either buddy.
To the woman working at the doughnut shop in the airport:
Yeah, really, a fat guy just ordered a tea. It's what I want not a miraculous act of restraint.
To the airport wheelchair assistance person:
Really, I know what I can and can't do, if I say I can push myself, I can. I know my body better than you do.
To the hotel valet parking guy:
I don't care that I pissed you off when I asked you to leave while I got out of the car. If you want a show, buy a freaking ticket.
To the woman who asked my about my diagnosis:
It's rude and none of your business. No I don't care if you really want to know.
To the man whose teenager made a pig face at me that you didn't correct:
Great parenting shows itself, you've raised a mean child, you may not get it now, but you will.
To the mom balancing two kids in either arm:
It doesn't lessen you for me to let you go first, I'm in a chair, you could drop precious cargo.
To the clerk who kept trying to get me to wave back as I rolled by:
We don't know each other, okay? You aren't Jerry Lewis and I'm not your kid.
To the people who just walked on and went about their day whilst in the presence of disability:
Bless you. Bless you. Bless you.
(One proximate cause of this is that, through the Python community, I've met multiple nice people who are organizing or championing PyCon North America in Cleveland in 2018 and 2019, and who will show me around a bit. Another is the United Airlines rep who, while trying to reroute us on our solar eclipse trip, said, "The only place in the United States I can get you tonight is Cleveland" which sounds more like a Call to Adventure than most bad travel news does.)
I'm particularly interested in hiking, walking tours, live folk and rock music, history (especially political, social, and science and engineering history), pair programming, and trains. I'll be there Friday October 20th through Sunday October 22nd. I'm also open to giving a talk or two while in Cleveland. Feel free to leave comments on this post -- the spam filter is rather aggressive but I'll fish things out regularly!
…trying to use Chinook Jargon in Alaska in July of 1902!
(Image credit: Wikipedia)
“Reminiscences of a War-Time Statesman and Diplomat” is a family memoir by Frederick William Seward (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1916). Read it for free at the link.
Frederick was the son of William H. Seward, Abe Lincoln’s Secretary of State who oversaw the purchase of Alaska from the Russian Empire. This book is his elaboration on what his dad wrote down about his influential life.
Buying Alaska seemed such a dumb idea at the time that this was popularly labeled “Seward’s Folly”. In present company, though, I think we can give W.H. some praise for trying to use Chinuk Wawa with the locals when his family visited southeast Alaska for fun in 1869; there are several mentions of the “Great Tyee” (president) of the “Boston Men” (Americans) in this book’s account of his meetings with Tlingit leaders (pages 369ff).
His son F.W. returned 33 years later. It’s admirable that he tried to emulate his dad’s linguistic gesture, but it turns out to be Folly Part 2:
We could spend hours in this
Museum, if we had them, but our time is limited in Sitka
On our way back, we come across the school children,
of whom there seem to be several hundred. They are
neatly dressed, and for the most part with air and com-
plexion like other school children in the northern States,
though occasionally the darker hue of some of them de-
notes their Esquimau or Indian parentage.
We stopped to converse with some of them, and to recall
some of the phrases of the Chinook jargon, which we took
some pains to learn several years ago, as it was then the
only mode of communication in vogue in the Territory.
The youngsters look at us with open eyes and shake their
heads. One of the missionary teachers laughingly says:
”They know good English, and do not know the Chinook
jargon, — some have not heard of it, and those who have,
consider it ‘low down talk.’ “ (pages 458-459)
Ugh! You try to show some class, and everyone thinks you’re lowdown. Can’t win ’em all…
The useful information for me in the above quotation is that the Jargon had already faded from use in Sitka by 1902. Keep in mind that Sitka was still the capital city until 1906, so it was the hub of U.S. influence. Not just government but missionary efforts were centered here, the latter under the leadership of Sheldon Jackson, known for “his efforts to suppress Native American languages“–and Whites typically saw the pidgin Chinook Jargon as an Indian language.
The Jargon hung on longer outside the limited sphere of Sitka’s direct influence. Because southeast Alaska remained less a settler society and more a frontier resource-extraction economy where newly arrived Whites experienced an urgent need to communicate with Native people who they shared no other language with, we find the pidgin in use throughout southeast Alaska into the 20th century. Typically Yakutat was named as the farthest northern limit of both Tlingit territory and CJ use, and of course the latter extended seamlessly southward down the British Columbia, Washington, and Oregon coasts.
(Image credit: Amazon.com)
If you’re looking for an excellent firsthand telling of life on the lingering SE AK frontier, you’re going to be happy with the book “Gilbert Said“. Gil McLeod was a character and pretty fine speaker of Jargon, and some Haida, who passed on about 25 years ago; we’re lucky to have his colorful words in print.