21st Century Native Lit

Whether writing in languages understood by only a handful of speakers or by millions, Indigenous authors write against the  grain of a globalizing, flat-world elite. From Arvanitika to Zoque, the following selection of poems, fables, essays, and interviews—all either written or translated into English—presents a global sampling of Native literary worldviews.

  • Photo gallery by Ben Packham
       By Ben Packham
    Photos by Ben Packham Ben Packham’s arresting photo gallery is a window to Mongolia’s lavish natural splendor, the sprawl of its growing capital city, Ulaanbaatar, and the icy beauty of the Mongol...
  • Amarsana Ulzytuev. Photo © Anna Dikareva.
      The author reading at the Gogol House Museum in Moscow, February 2014. Photo © Anna Dikareva. Listen to videotaped recordings of both Russian originals in the following clip (4:00-10:05).   Shenhe...
  • Swallows. Photo by Kenneth Cole Schneider/Flickr
       By G. Mend-Ooyo
    Swallows. Photo by Kenneth Cole Schneider/Flickr The Swallows G. Mend-Ooyo  Returning from afar, swallows in flocksEmbrace the tales of the gentle, tranquil steppe.The waters of eter...
  • Photo by Katerina Cheiladaki
    Photo by Katerina Cheiladaki Translator’s note: Arvanitika, or Arberishte as it is called in the Corinthian mountain villages, is one of the many languages in the world facing extin...
  • Jesus Never Understood My Grandmother's Prayers
       By Mikeas Sánchez
    Photo by Marjan Lazarevski     Jesucristo’is Ja’ Ñäjktyäj’ya Äj’ Tzumama’is Kyionuksku’y Äj’ tzumama’is ja’ myuspäkä’ kastiya’orenatzu’ jyambä’ä ngyomis’kyionukskutyamnatzu’ xaä’ tumä nabdzu’jyambäu...

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