In her insightful article on the custom of Pueblo Indian storytelling - "Language and Literature from a Pueblo Indian Point of view" - Leslie Silko shows the huge role that experiences play in the life of the cultural group she hails from, she reveals the value of storytelling on her behalf family, ancestors, neighbors, closest friends and in person herself. Regardless of the name that draws our focus on the principles of terms and literature, the main and central issue of her article, which first made an appearance as a speech for delivering prior to the audience, is story proper.
Story is not something to be told at certain moments using circumstances, if we deal with the lifestyle of Pueblo Indians. The complete life of those people is saturated with the large number of testimonies and "stories-within-stories". A Pueblo Indian, from his/her very delivery on, hears and listens to the reports, then, growing up, starts narrating them him/herself, and in such a way all his/her life is associated with this vivid custom. Thus, storytelling may be regarded as a texture of their life, for, on the one hand, the entire world and actuality are recognized in the light of stories, and, on the other palm, all the collective and individual experience of the Pueblos is altered into reviews and then orally offered to the following generations. This custom is more than just an equivalent of folklore in Western european or Asian traditions.
Leslie Silko emphasizes that "a written talk or assertion is highly suspect" among her people as it generally does not allow posting the feelings correctly. Mere graphical icons cannot communicate all the copiousness of human being experience, but an dental word is. At first sight, it seems somewhat unusual for a person reared in Western european custom, but if we look back at such traditional celebrities as Socrates who also declined the written expression as adding to the deterioration in our storage area, it becomes not so alien for all of us as well, although the next epochs established the value and even the preferable credibility of what is written or typed.
The same may be said about the Jewish tradition, its pre-Talmudic period when Torah she be-al-pe was prohibited from being deposit; the same is about early Christian traditions when Gospels were basically told by one individual to another; the Vedic amount of the Hindus when their sacred texts were recited orally and were not set in written form. There may be found a lot more parallels to the phenomenon of Pueblo history telling in the history of other ethnic organizations and civilization.
Leslie Silko goes on and says that, for the Pueblos, "dialect is storyline" (Silko 49). It is most obviously illustrated by the fact that lots of words in the Pueblo Indian words have their own reviews. When a account is advised, the teller often goes into the tales of words, and thusly a sensation of "stories-within-stories" emerges. The story becomes a web that is woven everywhere, which is unlike the convention of linear step by step narrating in Western european tradition.
"Language is story, storyline is terms" - that dialectic unity of Pueblo weltanschauung can determine the structure and content of these reviews and the essay devoted to them in particular.
The basis of any nation's, ethnicity's mentality lies in their cosmogonic and theogonic common myths, which constitute their collective unconscious, the last mentioned predetermines the style of pondering, living, and interacting of a certain country. The Pueblo Indians are not an exclusion here, and the author presents the "Creation tale" for all of us to understand the peculiarities of Pueblo conception of the world.
The story is significant both for its parallels and discrepancies with the Biblical creation report; moreover, the latter are more numerous and are well worth being brought up first. The entire world was created by Thought Girl - Tseitsinako - "thinking of her sisters and, as well as her sisters", she "considered anything that is" - and there appeared the planet. Thus, everything that is immanent in our world is a part of the complete; every component, every constituent of the reality belongs to this whole entire. The humans are also an inseparable aspect of the world and participate in this common entity. Contrary to the Bible where the world emerges because of this of God's word, or Logos (Genesis 1, 3; John 1, 1-3), the world appeared through the thought of the goddess and her sisters, the tight website link of humans to the type are also more obvious in Pueblo Creation story. In the Bible, people are created and let in the Garden of Eden immediately by God, in the Pueblo custom they come into the world due to the hard efforts of the pets or animals - Antelope and Badger.
Such a global outlook establishes the monistic belief of the reality, it influences both vocabulary and the storytelling of the Pueblo people. Experiences will be the part with their everyday life, these are multidimensional, web-like, organized in a complex structure that extends far beyond chronological or formal rational framework. There are several repetitions, feature of the dental talk, digressions, stories-within-stories etc that produce their stories a multilayer surface. You will discover no separate reports in Pueblo folklore - each history is a part of some more standard or fundamental account, and the latter subsequently constitutes larger experiences, so the whole Pueblo traditional and even modern every day discourse is one big tale with a wide array of smaller and infinitesimal subdivisions.
"The reports are always getting us mutually, keeping this whole mutually, keeping this family alongside one another, keeping this clan alongside one another" instructs us Leslie Silko. The vacation spot of history is thus to preserve the wholeness of the universe. The author offers us three illustrations, three testimonies that are still being told and re-told until nowadays.
The first one relates about a son who lost his new Volkswagen and "felt very bad about any of it". The structure of the storyline may be thought as the threefold one: 1) the man earns money, buys the automobile and drives it; then 2) it falls into the ravine and is broken to bits; 3) there come his friends and relatives trying to provide him consolation. What do they certainly specifically? They tell reports about the people who also lost their autos in the ravine, additionally, many of them lost their children and parents when their cars were going down into the arroyo. The 3rd area of the story can be an essential component of Pueblo storytelling. Those reviews become a member of the guy's life experience to prospects of the other people, and when placed into that context, his reduction is (or seems) not great, he turns out to be relatively blessed, because he shunned the threat of shedding his own and his relatives lives.
The stories of the others who live nearby transform grief into consolation, desperation into expectation, loneliness into amiable support. Finally, that guy's experience joins the normal discourse of individuals whose cars fell in to the arroyo, that dude consequently joins those people, he is not alone and this is the ideal consolation possible in such circumstances.
The second storyline about a lady who drowned herself in Kawaik Lake is more remarkable. There may be also distinguished three parts: 1) girl's need to her mother to prepare food her yashtoah, the conditions her mom announces; 2) girl's decision to get drowned; 3) carrying out her decision and her mother's go back home.
The core part of the story seems to be the next one, for this shows the transformations in the girl's decisions and intentions. There's also "stories-within-stories" here, and certain times and details are highly repeated, they are yashtoah, "I'll Kawaik and jump into the lake there" and similar phrases. The lady instructs the old man about her quarrel with her mom and her suicidal decision, the person, in turn, would go to her mother and instructs her what her child is going to do. These stories are so intertwined and interwoven, so naturally situated in the context, that it's problematic to take them out of there.
The storyline is pretty much sorted out in a chronological order, the sequence of happenings is not interrupted but attention should be paid to the fact that this history was read by the writer of the essay in a modernized version from her aunt. It is a vivid debate that customs, and Pueblo storytelling specifically, own a dichotomic characteristics - on the one hand, they cross the ancient connection with the ancestors on to modern era, on the other side, they include the present connection with the individuals and add those to the normal stock of Pueblo history. So, the previous, present and future years are not segregated, they are connected by a strong link of storytelling, which preserves the past and space for the future.
What is more, this storyline "explains" why the butterflies are so beautiful and multicolored. The story of a woman is tightly connected to the natural diversity in the pet world.
The third history happens in modern time, but it is nevertheless sorted out according to the existing pattern of Pueblo storytelling custom - numerous repetitions, associations, reminiscences, stories-within-story etc. The girl goes into details of the troubles of her life - loss of husband and mom, hardships of employment etc - but it ends with a glimmer of expectation, she matches with her aunt and grandfather, the second option gives her a very dear present - a silver precious metal 1907 buck, which shocks every person in their family.
Later, as she creates, "I maintained it for a long period because I assume I needed to have it to remember as i kept my home country".
The silver buck shown by her poor grandfather became a material token of her warm memory of her family, child years and homeland.
Thus, the storytelling will not appear to be "something that is done at bedtime" in the life span of Pueblo Indians, it's the essence with their life.
Detaching oneself from the stated stories, and having a look at the article as the complete, it becomes obvious that the essay itself is a Pueblo report, although informed to the non-Pueblo people.
It incorporates the analyzed stories, it is at first oral, it is saturated with the monistic worldview and it includes a good chance to be included into a larger piece of storytelling and is already the constituent of the Pueblo Indian discourse.
The article is also peculiar for being addressed to the two worlds - the traditional world of the Pueblos and the present day globalized world. This article intends to start and maintain a dialogue between these worlds, to deepen the mutual knowing that may bring about shared enriching of the two distinct ethnicities.
The writer herself and people she instructs the testimonies of are inspiring types of the success on this way of reciprocal understanding. She and the character types of the reports are built-into modern American contemporary society, but they didn't lose touch with the ethnic and ancestral legacy either. Although this view is not in full accord with Paul Lorenz who suggests that the worth of American Indian ethnicities "have been required to confront the alien prices of Western American culture" (Lorenz 59).
One more essential requirement of the storytelling should be paid scheduled focus on as well - the unity of teller and listener. Leslie Silko emphasizes the value of the latter - "significant amounts of the storyplot is thought to be inside the listener; the storyteller's role is to bring the story from the listeners" (Silko 51). Ib Johansen, however, views this issue from a bit another perspective - "In traditional societies storyteller performs an important role; he/she is placed at the center of the city, and his/her activities are believed as necessary to the self-awareness or sense of id of the community" (Johansen) - it's the teller whom Ib Johansen places as the main element shape in storytelling. Here we visit a classic exemplory case of the European approach.
As it occurs if you ask me, there is not the idea of central or key role / importance in Pueblo Indian world outlook. Important are the inhabitants and things of the world despite their role, size, destination; all of them are of identical relevance, each is necessary, all indispensable, all divine.
The monistic and pantheistic approach to life, people, phenomena and objects can determine the reverent frame of mind towards them, on the one hand, and creates problems in building the hierarchy of ideals, on the other hand. It really is indeed difficult to specify what passing is most significant in a certain history, or what relationships are more more suitable - either personal, or tribal, or clan ones.
Paul Lorenz identifies that the fiction of Leslie Silko "is the product of North american Indian, somewhat than Western, ethnic principles" (Lorenz 59). Indeed, the design of her essay stocks many common features with the original Pueblo Indian narratives. It is visible in her reference to ethnologists and anthropologists who have a tendency to differentiate "the types of experiences the pueblos notify" - she says that the folks of her ethnic group never split the testimonies into classes, "family reports are given equal acknowledgement" (Silko 51).
A distinctive attribute of the storytelling among this tribal band of Indians is that they connect more importance to what is said than how something is said, the content is more important than the proper execution relating to Pueblo weltanschauung. "This terms spoken isn't as important as just what a speaker is trying to state", writes the author of the essay. That peculiarity is also designated by Ib Jansen when he retells case of the Eskimo female accused of killing a storeman.
Thus, the notions of myth, legend, parable, story and so on aren't quite applicable to the custom of Pueblo storytelling, they are difficult or, even impossible, to distinguish in the context of these culture. The Creation account, Home Country account, the storyline of the young man's Volkswagen and the conversation of Ms Silko are of equal relevance and trustworthiness in the sight of Native North american. They do not abandon negative experiences of their loved ones and clans; these are always trying to convey the content, substance of the storyline so that the expressive means retreat to the background. The cosmogonic and sacred myths are as plausible as their own experience in the context of Pueblo Indian Culture.
Summing up, it is acceptable to indicate that "Language and Literature from a Pueblo Indian Perspective" and the other works brought up in this newspaper focus on the essential characteristics of Pueblo people's storytelling tradition, they emphasize its monistic worldview, illustrate how several testimonies may unite into one; their vocabulary and the complete life are tightly from the stories and can't be imagined without one another. Pueblo Indian storytelling tradition cannot but be recognized as a valuable constituent of the North american and world culture.
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