Recommended reading and listening – Cuentos Ayöök (Ayöök Tales) – one of our favorite bilingual books of 2018 and an inspired resource as we prepare for 2019, the International Year of Indigenous Languages #iyil2019.
The book is available online as a PDF and spoken in Spanish and Ayöök on Soundcloud.
These works were created by the Kumoontun group and the book was published by National Commission for the Development of Indigenous People (now the INPI).
Rough translation of the media release
Kumoontun means tequio or collective work in the Ayöök (Mixe) language of Oaxaca. This group of young people participate in the research, awareness and reflection on what happens in the community life ayöök of Santa María Ocotepec, municipality of Totontepec, Villa de Morelos, Oaxaca.
They have taken actions in favor of the dissemination of the Ayöök culture, and the constant search to bring it closer to the migrants who now live in other parts of the country and in the United States. Through work in the production of radio programs, they use the new instruments at their disposal to share the identity and the language that gives meaning to life in the community.
With the aim of recovering and strengthening the Ayöök language in everyday situations, they have focused on writing stories that take up oral tradition in the region; they consider that the recording of memory is urgent, because older people are becoming fewer and they are taking the ancestral knowledge and knowledge when they leave this world.
Creating, writing, translating and recording the stories has also been a challenge for the Kumoontun AC organization , because they must be approached from their essence in their own language and local context. At the same time, they seek to encourage other speakers of indigenous languages to write, to think and to find their roots and identity from different perspectives.
Here we present the result of this initiative that incorporates in an interactive book, some of those stories and desires, that is accompanied with the sound versions of the stories, so that they are also accessible to those who have not yet read or write in this variant of the Ayöök language.
Surely this work will be inspiring for other young people who are also interested in strengthening the indigenous identity of different regions of the country. The year 2019, declared as the International Year of Indigenous Languages by UNESCO, will see many other similar projects emerge around the world.
- Are any of the stories translated in English?
Cosas que motivan! Una maestra imprimió nuestro libro de Cuentos Ayöök para sus niños 🤗 pic.twitter.com/IeKXgUxACF
— kumoontun (@kumoontun) December 19, 2018