The Young Ancestors is a film that follows a small group of Native American students, who under the guidance of a mentor are learning their native language.The teenagers in The Young Ancestors are motivated and enthusiastic about learning because they understand the symbiotic relationship between language and culture; that one cannot survive for too long without the other. In a broader context the documentary explores the burgeoning movement by Native Americans to revitalize their native languages in tribes throughout America.


The tribes invested in language classes and digital media as ways of sustaining their language know that they are in a race against time. Many elders are the last of their tribe to be fluent speakers, and when these elders die, so too does the vast knowledge and repository of their language and culture.


DOWNLOAD ELECTRONIC PRESS KIT HERE: YoungAncestorsEPK.pdf

 

The students initially follow a Self Study Course implemented as a pilot program by the Indigenous Language Institute. They rely on the use of specially designed computer technology as an aid in capturing the inflections and nuances of their language. In the course of their studies, the students present their language mastery at Pueblo of Pojoaque.


Later, they are invited to present at the Sustaining Indigenous Languages Symposium, hosted by the University of Oregon, in Eugene. Join these students on their journey, one that propels them to new discoveries about life and about themselves. Support them as they work to keep alive their language and culture whose at-risk futures rely on the immediate efforts between young ancestors and their elders.

The Young Ancestors

Camino Vérité Films

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The trailer for The Young Ancestors has been shown at:

the Stabilizing Indigenous Languages Symposiums in Oregon and Albuquerque

The BreadLoaf School in Santa Fe

The Indigenous Language Institute Conference

The National Conference for Teachers of English