In 2006, when she was 86 years old, Dorothy Dora Whipple was looking for a new challenge. A fluent and lifelong Ojibwe speaker, Dorothy had just finished a three-year project for the University of Minnesota, making and transcribing recordings of her language. But she knew right away what she wanted to tackle next: a book of her stories, in Ojibwe and English, with drawings to illustrate the stories and perhaps interest younger people in learning the language.
Brendan Fairbanks and Wendy Makoon Geniusz worked as co-editors on the manuscript, and Wendy's sister, Duluthian Annemarie Geniusz, did the drawings to Dorothy's exacting specifications.
Wendy joins us to talk about the collaborative process with the now-95 year old Ojibwe elder, creating the book Dorothy elected to call "Chi-mewinzha," which according to the glossary, means "a really long time ago."
Published by the University of Minnesota Press.
You can find Ojibwe-English and English-Ojibwe dictionaries, photos, audio recordings, scanned documents, videos and more at the Ojibwe People's Dictionary.