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Native American Oral Tradition

Introduction to Pre-Revolutionary Literature
by

Alee Cotton

on 19 August 2011

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Transcript of Native American Oral Tradition

Native American Oral Tradition
Context - 1492 in North America
Native people spoke hundreds of languages
Cultures structured in diverse forms
Religious and mythological beliefs varied greatly
Native Americans did not use a written alphabet
Is oral tradition literature?
Literature comes from Latin littera, meaning letter
Oral tradition considered literature since Romantic movement (late
18th century) when literature began to be defined not by medium of
expression (written) but type of expression (those that emphasized
imagination, emotion)
Oral Performances
Out of necessity we will study these stories on the page, but it is important to remember that they were originally performed orally.
Native Literature

We will continue to study Native American literature throughout the school year. We will examine diverse Native views on key moments in American history.
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