NICHOLAS

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NICHOLAS

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Nicholas

Introduction

Research indicates that the contemporary Hopi youth has lost touch with their cultural bearings despite having grown up immersed even in the most intricate aspects of their culture. The modern Hopi youth cannot neither speak nor understand their native language. The current scenario has only become exacerbated by the erosion of cultural ideal as propagated by the changing times. Interestingly, some of the people can learn the Hopi language, speak it but fail to comprehend the meaning of the words they speak. Imperatively, most Hopi youth does not understand and speak their heritage language such that the youth themselves get positioned on the fringes of their speech community.

The paper aims at establishing the notion that places emphasis on active participation in the Hopi culture which entails religions, customs and the indigenous traditions that consequently lead to the acquisition and demonstration of cultural standards. The paper leads the reader to the understanding that language exists as a crucial component of the myriad socio-cultural and religious practices of the Hopi people. It was written with the help of expert writers from a popular writing service (check out essaywriter.org rating). Also, the paper adumbrates the prevailing theoretical concepts, methods, results and the implications of the study conducted by the Hopi people. Meanwhile, a constructive response would emanate from the paper as discussed in the subsequent portions of the paper to address certain intriguing components of the paper. Lastly, the paper would address the conflicting perceptions of socio-cultural and religious ideologies on monolinguals while dealing with the admissibility of such claims as espoused by other nations like America.

Theoretical Concepts of the Study

Language and Culture in the Hopi Identity-Formation

At some point on of the study participants called Dorine expresses her disappointment in failure to learn the language of her heritage. An accurate postulation would mean that quite often, the youth while growing up is entrenched in the culture, but the erosion of the same culture by other advanced forms of civilization make the Hopi youth internalize the expected ways of how they think, feel and act. Essentially, the Hopi language gets regarded as the fundamental aspect of the Hopi lifestyle among the youth especially when to get to the threshold of young adulthood. With the coming of age comes the manifestation of the linguistic shortcomings and conflicts of interests in the socio-religious aspects of the Hopi life. Therefore, language has been identifying as the most crucial missing link among the Hopi youth. Language plays a vital role in the Hopi culture since it is the strongest component that holds together the social and cultural fabric among the Hopi whereby knowledge, ceremonies, traditions and other aspects of culture get passed down through language. Consequently, language plays an extraordinary role in the understanding of the learning process.

The prevailing belief gets its fundamental basis of the notion that one only become Hopi by active participation in the Hopi while incorporating the linguistic aspect of the Hopi people to help in the integration of Hopi values and traditional customs. Alternatively, the examination of culture and linguistic experiences, one would aptly conclude that language primarily acts as the bridge through which the Hopi culture gets experienced. Also, the Hopi language stands as an independent entity within the Northern Uto-Aztecan language family with most speakers professing the knowledge of the different dialects which get perceived as intellectually relevant among the key population. Hopi continues to provide the meaningful intergenerational interaction among the Hopi across all ages, starting from children to adults. However, the language has come under intense threat of obliteration with subtle signs that it could get extinct with the emergence of the English language as the primary substitute. Other than the incorporation of English into the Hopi language, the prominence of the Hopi language gets perceived as changing due to other factors such as ambivalent attitudes toward the language. Therefore, the detected language shift has raised questions about the role of the schooling system in influencing the change. English has emerged as the primary language of communication among the Hopi youth due to frequent usage in the dissemination and acquisition of knowledge.

Research Methodology

Multiple, Intergenerational Case Study

The research methodology employed in the study was a multiple intergenerational study approach which would help in the provision of requisite information regarding the understanding of the impact of modernity as exacerbating the rapid social and cultural transformation among the Hopi youth with regards to the Hopi language, the Hopi lifestyle and the Hopi culture. The rapid change in the Hopi language ideologies got studied across three generations, and households discussed in the subsequent portions of the paper and acted as the primary aim of conducting the research. Data collection entailed the use of the tripartite phenomenological interview model which invariably combined focused life histories through deep analytical interviews and participant observations. In essence, the interview session was used to provide an efficient and culturally relevant avenue whereby the collection of oral stories would become possible. The oral interviews also provided a crucial understanding in the establishment of participants’ contextual memorization of the historical experiences they had undergone. The researcher also personally traveled on numerous occasions to mingle with the Hopi people to help him understand the cultural ceremonies while visiting the extended participant’s families who proved pivotal in the provision of accurate information.

Study Participants

The study participants were enlisted from students who had at one point in their lives had participated or undertaken Hopi language classes at the Hopi junior and senior schools. The participants were former students of Hopi junior and senior schools had to take part in the study together with their parents and grandparents to make the study all inclusive of the eligible participants who had met the eligibility criteria. The inclusion of the parents and the grandparents would provide the appropriate familial intergenerational model to help in the analysis of the language shift. However, the focus of the study changed due to inevitable changes necessitated by the withdrawal and untimely death of some participants.

During the period that the survey got conducted, all the three primary participants were 19 years of age and had graduated from Hopi high school. The participants also found were the perfect match for the study as they had just started settling into young adulthood having progressed through preschool, elementary, junior and eventually, senior high school. Alternatively, the participants had remained in intimate connection with their respective communities and participated in their ways of life on daily basis.

Results

From the study, a postulation was made regarding the ethnographic presentation of the study participants who demonstrated the lack of command of language as a representation of the contemporary Hopi youth. Despite the absence of a strong command of the Hopi language, the Hopi youth still exhibited a strong orientation to the Hopi way of life while achieving varying degrees of competency under socially defined parameters. A supposition was also made suggesting that living Hopi lifestyle by the participants depicted an efficient process of enculturation as propagated by the Hopi identity formation process. By ensuring that they lived the Hopi way, the participants suggested that one could learn and experience the Hopi lifestyle through engaging in songs, dances, ritual practices while incorporating the values presented by the Hopi traditions.

Response to Certain Intriguing Aspects of the Article.

The prevailing understanding surrounding the concept of effective enculturation through the established Hopi oral tradition presents a rather intriguing aspect of the article. In comparison with other developed cultures around the world, the Hopi culture shows a rather complex and intricate comprehension of what constitute ideal cultural inclusion. The Hopi shows an elaborate cultural system that ensures the preservation of traditional values and practices that get enshrined in living memory the moment a child is born to the time they attain adulthood. What creates confusion gets embedded on knowing the reason the contemporary Hopi youth would get influenced by other alien languages other than their own, including foreign culture presented by the rapid globalization. Since the Hopi culture is highly elaborate and rich culturally, it beats logic that it could face and succumb to the erosion caused by the changes brought about by modernity.

The Diversity Question

America has remained one of the biggest countries where monolinguals thrives. The primary reason Americans are monolingual is that they rarely incorporate the usage of foreign languages in their daily use. Alternatively, American students who take up foreign languages do so as a matter of formality which bears little significance in their supposedly rich culture where the acquisition of new languages becomes an auxiliary venture meant for improving an already established culture. Consequently, most Americans do not embrace the need to become aware of other languages because of the perceived cultural and linguistic superiority depicted in their predominant English language and social mannerisms. It is, therefore, true to hypothesize that Americans promotes monolingualism since most of the time they speak English at home. Rarely do they speak foreign languages at home.


Featured image attached to A Visit to the Center for Civil and Human Rights in Downtown Atlanta

On the morning of 7th November 2015, I took some time to visit the Center for Civil and human rights Movement located in downtown Atlanta. At the reception, I met a lady who explained to me the purpose of the center and what I was to expect when entering it. Before this visit, I had carried out a check on the center’s website and had come to understand a little about its purpose and functions. The center was first imagined by Evelyn Lowery together with Andrew Young, a former ambassador at the United Nations. These two lobbied Mayor Shirley Franklin who came in to launch the center. Online essay writing service states that this effort drew the attention of the community and corporates who came in to support it. Coca-Cola donated land next to its premise and the facility was constructed after its establishment in 2007. The receptionist explained to me that the main purpose of the center is to offer information to visitors that will help them understand the bridge that exists between the American Civil Rights Movement and today’s Todays Human Rights Movements around the world. At the time of my visit, there was a significant number of individuals entering and leaving the rooms before taking their time looking at what was displayed at the tables and on the walls. I had a feeling of anxiety when I arrived at the event since I had done some background reading on the civil rights movement and learnt about the suffering that these individuals had undergone before joining the movements and that that they went through as members of these movements (The Center for Civil and Human Rights, 2015).

Description of Some of the Items at the Center

One of the exhibition centers displays a rotating exhibition of items related to Martin Luther King’s non-violent struggle for human rights. One of the staff indicated that the artwork at the entrance of this section was done by Martin Luther King himself. This exhibition was sourced from the Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. collection. This collection brings together items and letters personally written by King during his fight. The gallery focused on showing the reasons why king won the Nobel Peace Prize and his legacy that even inspired more people to win the same award. The exhibition includes his nomination letters, the drafts of both his Nobel Lecture and the Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech as written by himself. It also outlines his Nobel tour schedule and displays a list of various Nobel winners who indicated that their activities were that led to the winning of the prize were influenced by the life of King. King’s winning of the prize drew the world’s attention to the American Civil Rights movement (National Park Service, 2008). The overall result is implementation of non-violent means by the contemporary Civil Rights Movement.

Another significant gallery collection is named Rolls down like Water. This collection features the American civil rights movements before and after the 1950s. There is an entry tunnel into the exhibition. At the beginning are photographs of the 1950s Civil rights movements. These photographs show the members of these movements in various positions including meetings, public rallies and demonstrations. There is a very appealing display referred to as the “The Movement Catches Fire.” This display has a large number of portraits of individuals who propelled the Civil Rights Movement to achieve its mandate due to their large numbers and dedication. The section then displays photographs from specific events that are significant in America’s civil rights history. It covers the March on Washington, The Three Hymns, the Day of King’s assassination and his requiem mass. All these are marked by photographs, commentaries and other paperwork that is meant to help the viewer get the clear picture of how these events went down. One of the things that drew my attention in this section was the fact that “”The Movement Catches Fire Portraits were modelled to look like a vehicle by having a wheel below them.

Summary of the Tour and Overall Reaction after Touring.

During the exhibition, I got to learn a lot about the momentum of the civil rights movement and the perception of the people especially those opposed to it while in power. The letters of Martin Luther showed that he was not intending to use violence in the movement but the authorities often thought that this was his ultimate goal. As I walked through the sections, I got to understand how the American Civil Rights Movement attracted a large number of individuals. Further the available written and recorded speeches are a proof that this movement had able leaders who were able to unite the masses for as common purpose. The event made me understand the pain that individuals underwent to ensure that everyone in the society is free and have equal access to all facilities. This encouraged me to use my freedom to improve the welfare of other people.


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