Yesterday (4/11/12) we had a meeting with our advisors, Inee, Felicia, and Virgie Bigbee. Virgie is a fluent Tewa speaker originally from the Tesuque Pueblo. Earlier, we had copied the categories and recordings from the Thorton Media Cherokee Application and sent the script to the Pojoaque Language Committee for their appraisal. Felicia and Virgie are both members of the committee, and came in to discuss the outcome of the script. With only minor edits, the script was approved by the committee.
Our group also added many more words and phrases to enhance the start-up quality of the application. Having a comprehensive script is important since Tewa has many words that English can’t describe well. For instance, there is a Tewa word for your father’s or mother’s younger brother and sister. We would just refer to this person as our uncle or aunt, but Tewa has more accurate way to describe these people. This is a result of their strong kinship bonds.
We also need to be careful while we add more words to the script. The committee members all expressed equal concerns about the privacy of the application. We have to be cautious to not add in sacred words, phrases, songs, or stories. The complete list of our script can be found here. After discussing some of the additions, Virgie graciously agreed to begin recording some of the phrases in each category. They can be listened to by clicking here.
Our group will continue to work with the Pojoaque Language Committee to improve the script and gather more and more recordings. We can’t wait until we have a working application prototype to show our advisors, sponsor, and the committee!