Indigeneous People

Deidra Peaches/Change Labs

The City of Flagstaff is hosting a virtual celebration today in honor of Indigenous Peoples' Day. Organizers of the event say it’s an opportunity for Native and non-Native people alike to understand the violent history of colonialism—and also envision a better future. KNAU’s Melissa Sevigny spoke with two Diné speakers at today’s event, Rose Toehe and Carmenlita Chief.

Dawn Kish

Northern Arizona musician Klee Benally has a new acoustic album out called The Unsustainable Sessions. It’s a departure from the music he’s perhaps best known for, the all-sibling Navajo punk trio Blackfire. But it’s equally powerful in its messages of environmental and social justice. In the latest installment of KNAU’s series Eats and Beats: Stories about Food and Music on the Colorado Plateau, Benally talks about the new album and punk rock as a tool for social change. He’ll perform at an album release party Fri, Dec. 20 at the Coconino Center for the Arts in Flagstaff as part of A Winter Solstice Indigenous Acoustic Revue


Courtesy of Ryan Singer

This month is the release of the latest “Star Wars” movie. “The Rise of Skywalker” is said to be the final chapter in the original saga, continuing the storylines of rebellion, dark versus light, endurance, and friendship. Those themes have long resonated with “Star Wars” devotees. That is uniquely true among Native American fans. From landscapes to survival skills to philosophy to imperialism, “Star Wars” speaks to the historical experiences of many Indigenous people. An art exhibit that reopens at the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff Fri, Dec. 20 sheds light on those connections. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius reports on “The Force Is With Our People,” an all-Native-artist show.


Melissa Sevigny

The Hopi language is endangered. A survey in the late nineties showed only five percent of Hopis under the age of twenty could speak it. Language loss is partially due to the legacy of boarding schools, which tried to assimilate Hopis into Anglo society. But it’s also because of modern pressures like television, the Internet, and employment. Hopis say losing the language means losing their culture.

SierraClub.org

Long before the Grand Canyon was a national park it was home to many Indigenous communities—some of whom still live there. This weekend that history will be highlighted during a special camping trip organized by the Sierra Club. The event is part of the ongoing centennial celebration of Grand Canyon National Park.