Category Archive: Chinook Jargon

What makes western Canadian English unique?

The textbook for a linguistics course I’m teaching notes a distinct western Canadian dialect of English. For distinct lexical features, it pretty much only mentions “skookum”. I enjoyed the opportunity to expand on… Continue reading

New: A biography of Edward Curtis

National Public Radio ran an interview this morning with Timothy Egan, the author of a new biography of Edward Curtis.  It was fascinating, and it’s worth a listen. The book is titled Short Nights of… Continue reading

“Siwash ducks”

Here’s a lexical item that could only come from Pacific Northwest English: siwash ducks. This is a Chinook Jargon loanword siwash ‘Indian, aboriginal’ modifying a native English word.  It refers to the various species… Continue reading

BC Indigenous people’s Chinuk pipa script: History, analysis and texts

BC Indigenous people’s Chinuk pipa script: History, analysis and texts. This is a paper I gave at the 47th International Conference on Salish and Neighbouring Languages in Cranbrook, BC on August 3rd, 2012. In it,… Continue reading

Chinook Jargon, and Indians, in a Washington state textbook

Lambert, Dale and Laura Lambert.  1998.  Washington: Past and present.  East Wenatchee, WA: Directed Media, Inc. This is an elementary-school textbook about Washington state for Washington students.  I invite comment on some points… Continue reading

The “Chinook lingo”

With a pidgin language, it’s perhaps more important than elsewhere to explicitly recognize the basilect. Pidgins hardly have ‘high’ forms. And they’re used in what the highfalutin folks see as pretty low places.… Continue reading

Fight ye men of Siwash!

Knox Siwash Author: Fight Song Lyrics Website: http://www.fightsonglyrics.com Added: July 8, 2006 “Hail! Knox All Glorious” Hail, Knox all glorious Unto thee we sing. Ever victorious, Homage we bring. Through all the ages All thy sons so… Continue reading

Siletz Dee-ni revitalization, with Chinook Jargon tie-in

The New York Times has run a well-regarded article on the revitalization of Siletz Dee-ni, an indigenous language of the Oregon Coast. It’s a good read and there’s a Chinook Jargon tie-in as… Continue reading

Sky Hopinka: skukum mamuk!

‘Skukum mamuk,’* as they’d say in Kamloops Wawa, to Sky Hopinka! If you actively f0llow things Chinook Jargon online, you may be familiar with his name. Sky has been honored as Outstanding Student in Higher Education… Continue reading

New land, north of the Columbia

Lorraine McConaghy.  2011.  New land, north of the Columbia: Historic documents that tell the story of Washington State from territory to today.  Seattle: Sasquatch. I was delighted to find a copy of this… Continue reading