Wótakuye- kinship terms by Alayna Eagle Shield

Wótakuye, in Lakota, is a kinship term, it refers to different relationships through kinship. It is something that is important for the revitalization of our language, because when you call somebody your relative, or treat them as such, then you’ll take care of them as a relative.” ~Alayna Eagle Shield.

Learn Lakota kinship terms! See transcript of terms used below.

Cousin terms!!

Female-Female: Čépȟanši
Female-Male: Šič’eši

Male-Male: Tȟaháŋši
Male-Female: Haŋkáši

Sibling terms!! Older to younger.

Female-Female: Mitȟáŋkala (mitȟá)
Female-Male: Misúŋkala

Male-Male: Misúŋ
Male-Female: Tȟaŋkší

Sibling terms!! Younger to older.

Female-Female: Čhuwé
Female-Male: Tibló

Male-Male: Čhiyé
Male-Female: Tȟaŋké

For more Lakota language lessons follow Alayna Eagle Shield here

Alayna Eagle Shield is from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe (SRST). Alayna is currently a Native American Community Academy (NACA) Inspired Schools Network Fellow and consultant. Her previous professional work includes the SRST Health Education Director, a Lakota Language instructor at the Lakota Language Immersion Nest and as the Language Specialist for the Language & Culture Institute. Alayna serves on multiple boards and committees and is currently the Native American Development Center Board Chair Person. She is also currently a Native American Community Academy (NACA) Fellow. Alayna earned her B.S. from the University of Mary (2014), Eminent Scholar from Sitting Bull College (2013), and Master of Public Health from NDSU (2017). Alayna offers multiple types of workshops including: Self Healing, Life Coaching, Powwow Dancing and Culture Sharing, Language learning and best practices, Comedy Performance, and Cultural Sensitivity.

‘We Learn from Our Grandmothers,’ 2012, by Lauren Good Day Giago. Photo: Ernest Amoroso/NMAI

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