Smith-Buonanno, Room 106
We Still Live Here, a documentary by award-winning filmmaker Anne Makepeace, tells the story of the return of the Wampanoag language. The film interweaves the present-day story Wampanoags reclaiming their language with historical events that silenced the language for more than a century and obliterated much of their culture – epidemics, missionary pressures, land loss, and the indenture of Native children.
A discussion with Jennifer Weston '97, Brown alumni and the film's co-producer, will follow the screening. Weston is the Immersion School Developer & Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe Language Department Director for the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project. She will talk about her work on the film and her ongoing involvement in language revitalization with indigenous nations of North America.
Free and open to the public. Reception to follow.
Jennifer Weston '97 is a researcher, writer, and producer who has worked for the past two decades with tribal community programs focused on cultural resiliency, environmental justice, addictions research, education, and language revitalization. Currently she serves as project director for the Wôpanâak language nest, Mukayuhsak Weekuw: The Children's House, and as Language Department Director for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe.
From 2008-2012 Weston managed the Endangered Languages Program for Cultural Survival, Inc., in Cambridge, MA, building a network of contacts among 350+ tribal language programs, and helping to raise nearly $2 million for 6 grassroots tribal language programs. She also served as researcher and assistant producer for the 2011 documentary WE STILL LIVE HERE: Âs Nutayuneân, and wrote and co-produced the Âs Nutayuneân interactive companion website, OurMotherTongues.org
Weston previously worked as an associate/web producer for the PBS documentary series WE SHALL REMAIN, and as a correspondent for Lakota Nation Journal. As both a student and staffer at Brown University, she developed Native studies curricula and community programs to support Native student retention, and worked as a research assistant on drug court, prison recidivism, and Native youth projects. She also trained as a journalist with Pulitzer Prize-winning reporters in Providence, RI, the founding editor of Indian Country Today, and through a Native American Public Telecommunications / PBS research and production apprenticeship at WGBH.
Weston is Hunkpapa Lakota and grew up on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in the Dakotas, where she has served her tribal government as environmental outreach coordinator, grant writer, and executive assistant to the chairman. She is also a novice Lakotiyapi and Wôpanâôt8âôk learner.