Chikashshanompaat bílli’ya: The Chickasaw language is forever

Drawing on research with Chickasaw citizens committed to Chikashshanompa’ (Chickasaw language) reclamation work, this chapter focuses on how Chikashshanompa’ learners and teachers engage in nation-building as they work to ensure the continuance of Chikashshanompa’ for future generations. Complementing Michelle Cooke’s chapter about teaching university Chickasaw language courses, I draw upon findings of 5 years of research during 2010–2015 with Chickasaws committed to learning, teaching, and actively using Chikashshanompa’. Together, we dedicate our chapters to the life’s work of Jerry Imotichey (1938–2016)—Michelle’s co-instructor and a language teacher to both of us. Jerry passed on in 2016, having inspired many with his love for his first language and passion for teaching others.

Chew, K. A. B. (2022). Chikashshanompaat bílli’ya: The Chickasaw language is forever. In J. Garcia, V. Shirley, and H. Kulago (Eds.), Indigenizing education: Transformative theories and possibilities in Indigenous communities America (pp. 105–120). Information Age Publishing. [post-print version]