Language Revitalization

In California, where the racism of Mexican migrants and the United States collide, Indigenous migrants have to face the shame both nations impose on Indigenous people. In the United States, Indigenous migrants have to become comfortable navigating another world where their language is excluded, where they are pressured to feel English and Spanish are important for survival and success.

Claudio Hernandez on CIELO’s Tu’un Savi Langauge class blog

Comunidades Indígenas en Liderazgo (CIELO) hosted our first language revitalization on Sunday that launched on the precipice of Indigenous people’s resistance month. CIELO is offering free language classes in Dilla Xhon, Tu’un Savi, Maya Tʼàan, and Ayuujk.  For the next three months, we are hosting weekly meetings on Zoom to strengthen our ties and relearning our languages in an Indigenous-led space that centers Indigenous people. As an Indigenous-led organization, we continuously see our communities in resistance to maintain and create ties to language and culture for the next generation. We hope to strengthen Indigenous communities’ ties to language by offering this safe space to learn and grow within our communities while building links to our extended community in the United States.

I often blamed my family for not knowing how to speak Mixteco. Then I  learned that it wasn’t their fault; it was the racist structures of society who discriminated against us for who we are as peoples speaking the language of our ancestors. 

Luis Lopez Resendiz on Tu’un Savi language class for CIELO’s blog

We were taught to speak Spanish at home and English in school. Our parents didn’t see where Maya would fit in this space that constantly works to erase our existence.

Genesis Ek on Maya Táan Classes on CIELO’s Language class blog
CIELO en Español
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