June 8, 2017
32 illus.
9.00 Inches (US)
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.35 Pounds (US)
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v2.1 Reference

The Gift of Knowledge / Ttnúwit Átawish Nch'inch'imamí

Reflections on Sahaptin Ways

The Gift of Knowledge / Ttnuwit Atawish Nch'inch'imamí is a treasure trove of material for those interested in Native American culture. Author Virginia Beavert grew up in a traditional, Indian-speaking household. Both her parents and her maternal grandmother were shamans, and her childhood was populated by people who spoke tribal dialects and languages: Nez Perce, Umatilla, Klikatat, and Yakima Ichishkíin. Her work on Native languages began at age twelve, when she met linguist Melville Jacobs while working for his student, Margaret Kendell. When Jacobs realized that Beavert was a fluent speaker of the Klikatat language, he taught her to read and write the orthography he had developed to record Klikatat myths.

After a stint in the U.S. Air Force during World War II, Beavert went on to earn graduate degrees in education and linguistics, and she has contributed to numerous projects for the preservation of Native language and teachings.

Beavert narrates highlights from her own life and presents cultural teachings, oral history, and stories (many in bilingual Ishishkíin-English format) about family life, religion, ceremonies, food gathering, and other aspects of traditional culture.

About the Authors

Virginia Beavert is a member of the Yakama Nation and a native speaker of Sahaptin. She is a recipient of the Washington Governor's Heritage Award and the Ken Hale Prize of the Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas. She is the coauthor of Ichishkíin Sinwit Yakama / Yakima Sahaptin Dictionary. Janne Underriner is the director of the Northwest Indian Language Institute at the University of Oregon. Virginia and Janne have been working together for the past twenty years.


"The Gift of Knowledge addresses topics and issues largely inaccessible to non-Native and younger scholars. It significantly augments and clarifies the existing literature."—Eugene S. Hunn, author of Nch'i-Wána, "The Big River": Mid-Columbia Indians and Their Land

"A compelling contribution to the study of Native American cultures and languages. The Gift of Knowledge is a masterfully written work of scholarship that represents the gift of storytelling by the most prolific Yakama scholar, Tuxámshish Virginia Beavert."—Michelle M. Jacob, author of Yakama Rising: Indigenous Cultural Revitalization, Activism, and Healing

"In The Gift of Knowledge, Beavert documents her outstanding life's work in Sahaptin languages and cultures of the Northwest."—Deward Walker, Jr., author of Nez Perce Coyote Tales: The Myth Cycle

9780295741659 : the-gift-of-knowledge-ttnuwit-193-tawish-nchinchimami-beavert-underriner
208 Pages
$29.95 USD

Other Titles by Virginia R. Beavert

The Gift of Knowledge / Ttnuwit Atawish Nch'inch'imamí

Virginia R. Beavert
Aug 2019 - University of Washington Press
$22.95 USD - Paperback / softback

Other Titles by Janne L. Underriner

The Gift of Knowledge / Ttnuwit Atawish Nch'inch'imamí

Virginia R. Beavert
Aug 2019 - University of Washington Press
$22.95 USD - Paperback / softback

Other Titles in BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Native Americans

Becoming Mary Sully

Philip J. Deloria
May 2019 - University of Washington Press
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My Decade at Old Sun, My Lifetime of Hell

Arthur Bear Chief
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Indian Ernie

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