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Media: New, unique Native American maps using autonyms

Submitter: Aaron Carapella

Submitter Email:
Linguistic Field(s): Anthropological Linguistics

Subject Language(s): Cherokee

Media Body: My name is Aaron Carapella. I have created the most comprehensive map of pre-contact Native America to date. This map uses Native American Nation’s original indigenous names for themselves, and shows where tribes were just before contact with outsiders. The intent of this map is to instill pride in Native peoples and to be used as a teaching tool from a Native perspective. This map is part of my Tribal Nations Map series - which covers the Nations indigenous to the "United States," "Canada," "Mexico," and - currently in progress - "Alaska."

Unique to these maps is the concept of utilizing correct tribal autonyms. That is, most names of Native American Nations used today derive from other tribe's languages or descriptions by non-Indigenous people. Lost through time by the dominant society have been the correct terms used by tribes themselves. While tribal people have gone on calling themselves interchangeably by their true names and given ones, the rest of the United States generally has ignored these self-identifying terms. These maps attempt to recollect and centralize all of this valuable cultural information. I have a link on my website called the "List of Indigenous Names and Their Meanings" for those who would like to dive into the linguistic breakdown of these names, found here:

Here is a You Tube video featured on TV:

Here is an article discussing my US Nations map:

Here is my website (pdf link to zoom in available):

Wado diginali (thank you friends),

Aaron Carapella
Issue Number: 25.1536
Date Posted: March 31, 2014