Keeping the Cherokee Language Alive and Dynamic for Future Generations

How do you keep language alive when you have only 500 fluent speakers of your language, and 70% of those speakers are older than age 50? If you are the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation, then you create a school to teach your young ones how to speak the language. You also work with the Western Band of the Cherokee Nation to create Cherokee words for “spaceman” and other words and phrases in current English usage.

The producers of the video below write:

With fewer than 500 fluent speakers of the Cherokee language, the native community is committed to teaching that language to its youngest members. See how that language is shared in a segment from “Our State,” the television program. Produced by UNC-TV and Our State Magazine, with generous funding from BB&T.

Sometimes taming data isn’t about preserving objects; sometimes it is simply about keeping information alive, dynamic, current, and available for the next generation to use.

Our State North Carolina magazine has an article this month on the Eastern Cherokee.

Jewel Ward
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Jewel Ward

Founder and Consultant at Impact Zone Consultancy
Nice to meet you! I am Jewel Ward, founder of Impact Zone ( Our specialties are search engine optimization and digital stewardship for creative industry websites.

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Here are three fun facts about me. I consider coffee and chocolate food groups. I am an INFJ. I love longboard surfing.
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