Sources of CJ recorded in the Inland NW/NEW TO THIS LIST

bob rock bobrockproductions at INET2000.COM
Wed Mar 3 02:36:33 UTC 1999

Tansi Mike and List:

Thank you for the greeting and the expansive, educational, linguistic
lesson.  I truly appreciated it.

Yes, me and my ancestors are from the St. Louis-Batoche area.  Many of
my relations are buried in the Batoche cemetery.  Many of my relations
fought and died in the 1885 Northwest Resistance.

But No, I am afraid I am not THAT BOB ROCK...of recording and record/CD
recording fame.  Sometimes I wish I had THE OTHER BOB ROCK'S money and
bank account, however.  I write and produce Metis educational books and
tv shows.

But again Mike, thank you so much for that Chinook translation.  I will
go over it again and again and try to absorb as much as I can and will
get back to you if I have any further questions on it (if that's ok with

Thanks again for the greeting and the message.

All the best,
Bob Rock

Mike Cleven wrote:
> At 09:38 PM 3/2/99 +0000, bob rock wrote:
> >Tansi Dave and List!
> >
> >I am brand new to this list.  I am a Metis from the St.Louis-Batoche,
> >Saskatchewan area.  I am a writer/producer/photographer eager to learn
> >more about Metis history, culture, language and traditions.
> >From Batoche!  We are honoured.......(for Americans unfamiliar with
> Canadian history, Batoche was the site of the most famous battle of the
> Riel Rebellions).
> And am I correct in assuming that you are Bob Rock of recording industry
> fame?  We are doubly honoured (nsaika iskum moxt kloshe kopa tumtum)......
> >Do we have any Metis "linguistic experts" on this list?
> >
> >The Metis local that I belong to would like to have the words "EQUALITY,
> >DIGNITY AND RIGHTS" engraved onto a memorial plaque we are putting
> >together (to honour our elders and ancestors).  Might anyone on this
> >list be able to venture a Metis/Michif  translation of the words,
> I've met someone in the last while who's a Michif speaker or scholar; can't
> recall if it's in this listserve or someone from sci.lang; I'll have to
> check my archives.
> >And how might those translated Michif words differ and vary in the
> >Chinook tongue?
> That's a tough one; the Jargon has only some words and certain compounds
> for abstractions with complex meanings; as in Michif, I suspect that
> adaptions of the French or English words might be used.  Rough renderings
> might be:
> Equality - "ikt kahkwa konaway" (one as all), "ikt kopa ikt" (one to one)
> or "ikt kahkwa ikt" (one as one) or "konaway kahkwa" (all alike).  At an
> absolute level (for the terse abbreviated languages of mottos) it might be
> possible just to use "kahkwa" (like, as, how), although this context would
> be AFAIK a new usage for this word.
> Dignity - "youtl" is "proud" or "spirited", even "happy", which seems a
> better choice than "halo shem" (without shame).  "Mitlite mitwhit" is
> another possibility - standing upright - and perhaps "mitwhit" by itself
> would be a good choice (standing, upright, erect).
> Rights - this is a real tough one; the only thing that comes close, I
> think, is "law" which means just what it does in English plus the concepts
> of government, rules, etc.  Nothing quite like "rights", though, and this
> would be because the concept was unknown by the peoples of the Northwest
> (even non-natives had no real "rights" in the modern sense).  The closest
> concept I can think of would simply be "skookum" in its sense of "able, to
> be able"; it also means "strong", "solid", "genuine", "brave", "honest",
> etc.  Maybe Tony J. has some idea of what else could be used.
> Lastly, a comment about the Metis community and the Jargon; the Jargon's
> history as an intercommunal language in the Northwest was aided and abetted
> by the many Metis who worked in the employ of the fur companies; their
> legacy can be seen directly in the French content of the Jargon as well as
> the occasional borrowing from Algonkian languages.  In a very real sense,
> the Jargon was THE Metis language west of the Rockies, both in its
> foundation and in its continuing usage into the 20th Century in the
> "non-status" and "half-breed" communities, whose knowledge of the Jargon
> was much more likely than any proficiency in any of the purely "tribal"
> older languages......
> Mike C.
> Mike Cleven
> ironmtn at
> The thunderbolt steers all things.
>                            - Herakleitos

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