OLAC Record

Title:Growing, Preserving and Preparing Food
Making Wichita Accessible: A Multimedia Archive of Data and Analyses
David S. Rood and Armik Mirzayan
Contributor (annotator):Rood
Coverage:United States
Description:Wichita speakers were gathered for a meal and asked to "speak Wichita" for about an hour and a half. The topic of discussion was traditional foods: growing, preserving, and preparing them. This group is generally too young to have been more than observers or helpers in the processes when they were children, so they have a hard time with both the vocabulary and the concepts. The value of this session is not in the pitifully small amount of Wichita spoken, but in the cultural information, impoverished as that is, and in the way the conversation illustrates how the language has been lost. A sub-topic of the evening centers around some old pictures which one of the participants has brought, with recollections about some of the people in them. This session archives about a third of the conversation; the rest was deemed irrelevant to language documentation, or inappropriate for public presentation.
The project is to videotape the last speakers of Wichita talking in and about their language, history over the last century, and culture. Videotapes were made in the summers of 2002 and 2003 in Anadarko, Oklahoma.
This file was generated from an IMDI 1.9 file and transformed to IMDI 3.0. The substructure of Genre is replaced by two elements named "Genre" and "SubGenre". The original content of Genre substructure was: Interactional = 'conversation', Discursive = 'isolated words', Performance = 'conversation'. These values have been added as Keys to the Content information.
The linguist asks for names of various prepared foods and their ingredients, as well as for recall of traditional food preparation and preservation techniques. A second content type involves the speakers discussing people in some old pictures. There is very little Wichita in the whole evening, mostly just isolated words, but the descriptions of the preserving and preparing of the foods may be of ethnohistorical value.
English is the dominant language for everyone in the session. Wichita words and phrases are introduced with much hesitation and prompting.
The linguist and five Wichita speakers use English to try to recall Wichita terms for foods and food preparation and preservation techniques and tools. Some of the conversation also concerns individuals in some old pictures. There is almost no Wichita used this evening beyond the recall of individual nouns or single verbs. All the participanjts except the linguist have lived near each other all their lives, and shared the same culture,
Rood is the linguist on the project. He has been working with Wichita since about 1967.
Vivian has spoken both Wichita and English in her adult life. She had a stroke a few years ago, but seems to have recovered from it very well. She does not speak very clearly in the videotapes, but she is able to say almost anything she wants to in Wichita if the environment is right.
Doris is the most fluent speaker in the group, and the most willing to speak. She was raised by grandparents and in her youth used Wichita for all communication around the home. In recent years she has been the primary resource person for the tribe's language classes.
Shirley has not spoken the language much in her adult life, though she can often recall things that her parents and grandparents said, and she understands a lot.
Pearl claims to be one of the two oldest living Wichitas. She spoke the language extensively as a child and young adult, but was married to a Caddo man and did not use the language with her own children. She is not able to say much in Wichita, but her memories of local history and of traditional culture are vivid and detailed, and she often dominates the conversation with them, though only in English. She performs some songs very competently, although protesting that surgery some years ago damaged her throat.
Dru has spoken the language all her life. She is an active participant in the Native American Church, and uses Wichita for prayers during their services. She is willing to try to say things in Wichita when no one else will. She occasionally makes grammar mistakes, such as an error in aspect choice or verb conjugation type, but these do not hinder comprehension of her intended message.
Grace is the daughter of a fluent speaker, but never learned the language herself. She is well respected by the others in the group, however, and has great curiousity about the language and about recent history. She is often very helpful in eliciting information and language from the group, though she says almost nothing in this session.
The senior collector is a linguist at the University of Colorado who has been studying Wichita since 1967. His assistant is a graduate student in linguistics. On the videotape, Rood is frequently heard prompting for additional information. Mirzayan operated the camera and controlled the recording devices.
David asks peopel to speak in Wichita and talk about food. There is a little banter in Wichita, then Pearl starts showing the pictures she has brought, ignoring David's prompt.
Doris asks in Wichita about the people in one of the pictures.
Doris asks about the people in another picture.
Dru elicits the Wichita word for the pumpkin dumplings, the group discusses alternatives, and jokes with Dru about eating them.
Pearl is speaking, while Doris and Shirley are holding a separate conversation. The latter contains quite a bit of Wichita, but it is hard to hear under Pearl's speech. Later Pearl continues talking about someone in one of the pictures, David asks her to say some of those things in Wichita, and some discussion of those words ensues.
Discussion of word for 'he was comical'.
David brings the conversation back to food; names of foods and tools for preparing them are discussed, though the group is uncertain about a lot of it.
Ways to prepare pumpkin.
Ways to prepare meat, terms for the products, and general discussion of a verb for 'to hang'. Again, Doris and Shirley are having a conversation sotto voce under the main discussion; there is more Wichita in that than elsewhere, but it may not be possible to hear it. No conclusion, since the conversation went on for another half hour, but without anything of interest to this project.
Publisher:David S. Rood
University of Colorado; Volkswagen Foundation
Subject:Wichita language
English language
Subject (ISO639):wic


Archive:  The Language Archive at the MPI for Psycholinguistics
Description:  http://www.language-archives.org/archive/www.mpi.nl
GetRecord:  OAI-PMH request for OLAC format
GetRecord:  Pre-generated XML file

OAI Info

OaiIdentifier:  oai:www.mpi.nl:1839_00-0000-0000-0001-4872-2
DateStamp:  2017-02-14
GetRecord:  OAI-PMH request for simple DC format

Search Info

Citation: David; Vivian; Doris; Shirley; Pearl; Dru; Grace; David S. Rood and Armik Mirzayan; Rood (annotator). 2002-07-17. David S. Rood.
Terms: area_Americas area_Europe country_GB country_US iso639_eng iso639_wic

Inferred Metadata

Country: United KingdomUnited States
Area: AmericasEurope

Up-to-date as of: Wed Apr 12 2:40:12 EDT 2017