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November 4, 2021

Preservation Thursday: Lakota Language: Misunderstood, Mistranslated, and Misused

DEADWOOD, SD - Deadwood History, Inc. and the Deadwood Historic Preservation Commission will host a presentation by Francis Whitebird at 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 18, 2021, at the Homestake Adams Research and Cultural Center (HARCC), 150 Sherman Street, Deadwood. Free to members and $5 for non-members. The event is wheelchair accessible. Please feel free to bring your lunch.

Whitebird will discuss how the Lakota language has been misunderstood, mistranslated, and misused. The Lakota language is esoteric; it has a different thought pattern. When using the English model, a single word or phrase cannot be properly interpreted from a non-native point of view. Lakota has a completely different sentence structure and formation than English and other European languages. Whitebird will also talk about how names in Lakota have been mistranslated, such as Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull, and Left Hand Bull. 

Whitebird has a master's degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is a fluent Lakota speaker and member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. Whitebird received a Purple Heart in the Vietnam War. He also served as chairman of the National Advisory Council on Indian Education for President George H.W. Bush.

Preservation Thursday is made possible by the Deadwood Historic Preservation Commission, Deadwood History, Adams-Mastrovich Family Foundation, Deadwood Chamber & Visitors Bureau, Deadwood Mountain Grand, and the Saloon No. 10.