For those teaching linguistic anthropology, we would like to share a short exercise provided to us by John L. Steckley at Humber College (John is the author of White Lies about the Inuit).
Click here to download the PDF of Dr. Steckley’s exercise on mandatory respect. As he tells his students:
“Here we have mandatory respect for age in Huron/Wendat kinship terms, with respect shown by putting the older one (when age is important) in the subject rather than the object position. Elders were greatly respected in Huron/Wendat traditional culture. Contrast that with having no grammar for respect for age in mainstream North American culture. Both the culture and language in both cases align.”
You can also watch Dr. Steckley’s TEDx talk from last year on YouTube: “What if Aboriginal languages mattered?”