If you like to get your news in Lakota you can now do so online. A new all Lakota language website called Woihanble.com is now up and running. The word Woihanble translates to dream in English. The site is written completely in Lakota. It features news stories from tribal nations across South Dakota.
The website Woihanble is one of the latest efforts to in South Dakota revitalize the Lakota language. It translates local stories from news outlets that cover South Dakota reservations from English to Lakota.
Peter Hill is a founder of the website. He says although the Lakota culture is inclusive of non speakers, the language doesn’t always translate well.
“The language and the culture are pretty much inextricably bound up to each other. In any attempt to really support Lakota culture or have work to make Lakota culture thrive even more, the language really has to be part of that. But the language has been declining and the number of speakers for probably the last 150 years,” Hill says.
Hill says the website is part of ongoing efforts trying to gain attention for the language. He says part of their goal is to increase the number of Lakota speakers.
“The more we can sort of bring the language out and fuse it into everyday life, the more likely we have to have people really embrace it and work to revitalize it. If not here, where we have the greatest concentration of speakers left and the largest Lakota reservation land base, this seems like the natural place for it,” says Hill.
He says the website isn’t only for fluent Lakota speakers. There are audio links included with stories that may sound something like this:
“Íŋyaŋ Woslál Háŋ Oyáte: “Wíglisapa Oíyaye Tȟáŋka kiŋ Lé Tȟokáta Wičhóuŋčhaǧe kiŋ Wičháyušičiŋ Kte. Standing Rock Sioux Tribe ‘Pipeline will affect future generations’ Tribe diametrically expresses opposition,” Hill says.
He says Woihanble also includes links to the original English versions of the news stories.