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American Northernness

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  • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
    OK, a rambling post, yup (Did I already post my theory/query about how neat it would be if another Tolkienesque genius came along and did for the New World
    Message 1 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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      OK, a rambling post, yup

      (Did I already post my theory/query about how neat it would be if another
      Tolkienesque genius came along and did for the New World continents what he
      did for the UK? It could probably be done, but it wouldn't be easy.) The
      land itself, and the nations before the Europeans came. Much mythic stuff
      there, and it is being treated all the time, sure, but generally in a
      specific or regional way. Or in a meaningless mishmash New Age way. The
      matere is there, all we need is the genius to synthesize it.

      Now, I am still rolling with the New World theory, and I have recently
      "discovered" Nunavut, the Canadian Inuit territory. The Inuit language has
      its own Cyrillic characters, made me think of runes... and its own world
      and language. I mean, it's not just translation, like going from French to
      Spanish. There is a whole vista of "New World Northernness" (shades of
      Sedna!) available out there.

      Lizzie

      Elizabeth Apgar Triano
      lizziewriter@...
      amor vincit omnia
      www.lizziewriter.com
      www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org
    • alexeik@aol.com
      In a message dated 5/4/5 7:21:04 PM, Lizzie wrote: The Inuit of Nunavut don t
      Message 2 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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        In a message dated 5/4/5 7:21:04 PM, Lizzie wrote:

        <<The Inuit language has
        its own Cyrillic characters, made me think of runes.>>

        The Inuit of Nunavut don't use Cyrillic characters, they use a syllabary that
        was devised specifically for their language.
        Alexei
      • David Bratman
        There s one significant difference between Tolkien trying to write an Anglo-Saxon myth and someone doing the same for the Inuit. The difference is, Tolkien was
        Message 3 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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          There's one significant difference between Tolkien trying to write an
          Anglo-Saxon myth and someone doing the same for the Inuit.

          The difference is, Tolkien was himself of Anglo-Saxon descent, so were most
          of his immediate readers, and many of who aren't are at least steeped in
          English culture. Whereas very few Americans, or even Canadians, are Inuit.
          There's a distance there, and it's harder to overcome. (Not to say that
          it can't be: myths have been known to reach people very alien from them,
          and Tolkien has been appreciated by people who know nothing of England -
          but he seems to be being appreciated in a very different way.)

          Now's the time to capture Inuit culture, though, as we're so busy melting
          their landscape.

          DB
        • Mike Foster
          Does anyone of translations of Tolkien into any Native American languages, please? Responding to a scholarly query.... Thanks, Mike
          Message 4 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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            Does anyone of translations of Tolkien into any Native American
            languages, please?

            Responding to a scholarly query....

            Thanks,
            Mike

            Elizabeth Apgar Triano wrote:

            >OK, a rambling post, yup
            >
            >(Did I already post my theory/query about how neat it would be if another
            >Tolkienesque genius came along and did for the New World continents what he
            >did for the UK? It could probably be done, but it wouldn't be easy.) The
            >land itself, and the nations before the Europeans came. Much mythic stuff
            >there, and it is being treated all the time, sure, but generally in a
            >specific or regional way. Or in a meaningless mishmash New Age way. The
            >matere is there, all we need is the genius to synthesize it.
            >
            >Now, I am still rolling with the New World theory, and I have recently
            >"discovered" Nunavut, the Canadian Inuit territory. The Inuit language has
            >its own Cyrillic characters, made me think of runes... and its own world
            >and language. I mean, it's not just translation, like going from French to
            >Spanish. There is a whole vista of "New World Northernness" (shades of
            >Sedna!) available out there.
            >
            >Lizzie
            >
            >Elizabeth Apgar Triano
            >lizziewriter@...
            >amor vincit omnia
            >www.lizziewriter.com
            >www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
            >Yahoo! Groups Links
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
          • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
            Yeah, I just read that it was derived from a shorthand symbol set. How unromantic. But perhaps I was reading outdated info. Someone had sent me an image of
            Message 5 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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              Yeah, I just read that it was derived from a shorthand symbol set. How
              unromantic. But perhaps I was reading outdated info. Someone had sent me
              an image of a Nunavut first day cover, and called it "Cyrillic" and I just
              copied their usage. I will keep reading.

              thanks

              Lizzie

              Elizabeth Apgar Triano
              lizziewriter@...
              amor vincit omnia
              www.lizziewriter.com
              www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org


              > [Original Message]
              > From: <alexeik@...>
              > To: <mythsoc@yahoogroups.com>
              > Date: 5/4/2005 3:32:21 PM
              > Subject: Re: [mythsoc] American Northernness
              >
              >
              > In a message dated 5/4/5 7:21:04 PM, Lizzie wrote:
              >
              > <<The Inuit language has
              > its own Cyrillic characters, made me think of runes.>>
              >
              > The Inuit of Nunavut don't use Cyrillic characters, they use a syllabary
              that
              > was devised specifically for their language.
              > Alexei
              >
            • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
              *koff* Very good. Hm, yes, in the case of Tolkien, the Anglo invaders became the dominant force, as the Europeans did here, and he was recreating a mythos for
              Message 6 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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                *koff* Very good.

                Hm, yes, in the case of Tolkien, the Anglo invaders became the dominant
                force, as the Europeans did here, and he was recreating a mythos for that
                people, the way one might make one for the "melting pot." But I'd rather
                hear about the Celts and the Native Americans.

                Well, if we want all the oil and diamonds under those glaciers, we gotta
                get rid of them somehow.

                Lizzie

                Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                lizziewriter@...
                amor vincit omnia
                www.lizziewriter.com
                www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org


                > [Original Message]
                > From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
                > To: <mythsoc@yahoogroups.com>
                > Date: 5/4/2005 3:38:36 PM
                > Subject: Re: [mythsoc] American Northernness
                >
                > There's one significant difference between Tolkien trying to write an
                > Anglo-Saxon myth and someone doing the same for the Inuit.
                >
                > The difference is, Tolkien was himself of Anglo-Saxon descent, so were
                most
                > of his immediate readers, and many of who aren't are at least steeped in
                > English culture. Whereas very few Americans, or even Canadians, are
                Inuit.
                > There's a distance there, and it's harder to overcome. (Not to say that
                > it can't be: myths have been known to reach people very alien from them,
                > and Tolkien has been appreciated by people who know nothing of England -
                > but he seems to be being appreciated in a very different way.)
                >
                > Now's the time to capture Inuit culture, though, as we're so busy melting
                > their landscape.
                >
                > DB
                >
              • WendellWag@aol.com
                In a message dated 5/4/2005 11:19:14 P.M. Eastern Standard Time, lizziewriter@earthlink.net writes: Hm, yes, in the case of Tolkien, the Anglo invaders became
                Message 7 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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                  In a message dated 5/4/2005 11:19:14 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
                  lizziewriter@... writes:

                  Hm, yes, in the case of Tolkien, the Anglo invaders became the dominant
                  force, as the Europeans did here, and he was recreating a mythos for that
                  people, the way one might make one for the "melting pot."


                  The point is that Tolkien was at least partly descended from the peoples
                  whose mythology he was trying to recreate. Most English people, with the
                  exception of those whose ancestors obviously immigrated to England in the past
                  century (mostly those of South Asian or Afro-Caribbean ancestry), have both
                  Celtic and Anglo-Saxon (and probably Norman French) ancestry. Tolkien could thus
                  be said to be recreating a mythos that he had some cultural and genetic
                  connection to. It's hard to see how 95% of present-day North Americans could
                  possibly be able to claim that they were recreating their "own" mythos if they
                  were to attempt to recreate the mythology of the native peoples of North
                  America.

                  Wendell Wagner


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • David Bratman
                  ... Tolkien wasn t intending a mythos for the melting pot. He was intending one for his people, the English. That others have enjoyed it is wonderful, but it
                  Message 8 of 14 , May 4, 2005
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                    At 04:51 PM 5/4/2005 -0400, Lizzie wrote:

                    >Hm, yes, in the case of Tolkien, the Anglo invaders became the dominant
                    >force, as the Europeans did here, and he was recreating a mythos for that
                    >people, the way one might make one for the "melting pot."

                    Tolkien wasn't intending a mythos for the melting pot. He was intending
                    one for his people, the English. That others have enjoyed it is wonderful,
                    but it wasn't his original intent back in 1916.

                    >But I'd rather
                    >hear about the Celts and the Native Americans.

                    Don't look to Tolkien for either of those (except a little Welsh linguistic
                    influence in Sindarin). He was rather put out at an early reader's
                    description of the Silmarillion's "eye-splitting Celtic names." He
                    replied, "Needless to say [the names] are not Celtic! Neither are the
                    tales. I do know Celtic things (many in their original languages Irish and
                    Welsh), and feel for them a certain distate," and he goes on to explain why
                    (Letters p. 26). At another time he said his aim was to achieve "the fair
                    elusive beauty that some call Celtic, though it is rarely found in genuine
                    ancient Celtic things." (Letters p. 144)

                    David Bratman
                  • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                    OK OK never mind. If anyone is interested in discussing how the idea COULD be done instead of how it could NOT be done, I ll see you on DisaffectedMythies.
                    Message 9 of 14 , May 5, 2005
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                      OK OK never mind. If anyone is interested in discussing how the idea COULD
                      be done instead of how it could NOT be done, I'll see you on
                      DisaffectedMythies. Tolkien was a wonderful, wonderful genius, but I have
                      to hope that there will be others of his stature.

                      thanks,

                      Lizzie

                      Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                      lizziewriter@...
                      amor vincit omnia
                      www.lizziewriter.com
                      www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org
                    • Croft, Janet B.
                      Well, I could see a mythology related more to a place than a people, which might be appropriate for a primarily immigrant population like that of North
                      Message 10 of 14 , May 5, 2005
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                        Well, I could see a mythology related more to a place than a people,
                        which might be appropriate for a primarily immigrant population like
                        that of North America. As a nation we don't have a unified mythology of
                        "a people" to call on, but we do have concepts like "the West" or "the
                        Frontier" or "the Colonies", more tied to a place than a people. So why
                        not "the Great White North" -- and there probably is a mythos of sorts
                        out there, since the phrase exists -- maybe Canadian and not as familiar
                        to us south of the border. I think Orson Scott Card's Alvin Maker
                        series might have touched on this, as well as Neil Gaiman's "American
                        Gods", but it's been too long since I've read either. And IIRC Kim
                        Stanly Robinson's Mars trilogy had some speculation on mythology of
                        place for Mars, drawing on Bradbury.


                        Janet Brennan Croft

                        -----Original Message-----
                        From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                        Of Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                        Sent: Thursday, May 05, 2005 8:09 AM
                        To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] American Northernness

                        OK OK never mind. If anyone is interested in discussing how the idea
                        COULD be done instead of how it could NOT be done, I'll see you on
                        DisaffectedMythies. Tolkien was a wonderful, wonderful genius, but I
                        have to hope that there will be others of his stature.

                        thanks,

                        Lizzie

                        Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                        lizziewriter@...
                        amor vincit omnia
                        www.lizziewriter.com
                        www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org






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                      • alexeik@aol.com
                        In a message dated 5/5/5 7:45:30 PM, Lizzie wrote:
                        Message 11 of 14 , May 5, 2005
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                          In a message dated 5/5/5 7:45:30 PM, Lizzie wrote:

                          <<OK OK never mind. If anyone is interested in discussing how the idea COULD
                          be done instead of how it could NOT be done, >>

                          Actually, someone who *is* doing it is Orson Scott Card, in his "Alvin Maker"
                          series. He's doing it not by cannibalising the mythologies of culturally
                          alien Native peoples but by imagining an alternative America in which the great
                          themes that have been perceived (and given mythic resonance) in accounts of
                          American history are articulated in a different way that highlights their value as
                          myth.
                          Alexei
                        • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                          Splendid! Thank you, Alexei! I think I read one of those books early on, or a short story, and I always meant to get back to them. Orson Scott Card is a
                          Message 12 of 14 , May 6, 2005
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                            Splendid! Thank you, Alexei! I think I read one of those books early on,
                            or a short story, and I always meant to get back to them. Orson Scott Card
                            is a master storyteller isn't he? What's his background?

                            Lizzie

                            Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                            lizziewriter@...
                            amor vincit omnia
                            www.lizziewriter.com
                            www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org


                            > [Original Message]
                            > From: <alexeik@...>
                            > To: <mythsoc@yahoogroups.com>
                            > Date: 5/5/2005 4:04:31 PM
                            > Subject: Re: Re: [mythsoc] American Northernness
                            >
                            >
                            > In a message dated 5/5/5 7:45:30 PM, Lizzie wrote:
                            >
                            > <<OK OK never mind. If anyone is interested in discussing how the idea
                            COULD
                            > be done instead of how it could NOT be done, >>
                            >
                            > Actually, someone who *is* doing it is Orson Scott Card, in his "Alvin
                            Maker"
                            > series. He's doing it not by cannibalising the mythologies of culturally
                            > alien Native peoples but by imagining an alternative America in which the
                            great
                            > themes that have been perceived (and given mythic resonance) in accounts
                            of
                            > American history are articulated in a different way that highlights their
                            value as
                            > myth.
                            > Alexei
                            >
                          • Stolzi
                            ... From: Elizabeth Apgar Triano ... Card ... Mormon (Latter Day Saints) - a church very focused upon events on the N. American
                            Message 13 of 14 , May 6, 2005
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                              ----- Original Message -----
                              From: "Elizabeth Apgar Triano" <lizziewriter@...>


                              > Splendid! Thank you, Alexei! I think I read one of those books early on,
                              > or a short story, and I always meant to get back to them. Orson Scott
                              Card
                              > is a master storyteller isn't he? What's his background?


                              Mormon (Latter Day Saints) - a church very focused upon events on the N.
                              American continent.

                              Diamond Proudbrook
                            • Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                              OK. Does he have a profession other than writer-of-stories I guess should have been my question. Although yes that is a relevant answer, certes. I am
                              Message 14 of 14 , May 6, 2005
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                                OK. Does he have a profession other than writer-of-stories I guess should
                                have been my question. Although yes that is a relevant answer, certes. I
                                am thinking, like, David Brin (physicist), Isaac Asimov (some kind of
                                sciencey background), C.S. Friedman (stage costuming, etc.), J.R.R. Tolkien
                                (philologist).

                                Lizzie

                                Elizabeth Apgar Triano
                                lizziewriter@...
                                amor vincit omnia
                                www.lizziewriter.com
                                www.danburymineralogicalsociety.org
                                >
                                > Mormon (Latter Day Saints) - a church very focused upon events on the N.
                                > American continent.
                                >
                                > Diamond Proudbrook
                                >
                                >
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