“The World on the Turtles Back” Iroquois Myth Notes from pages 20-22: A. More than 200 Native American Language Families 1. 2. 3. Recent studies support the idea that America was settled by only three migrations over the Bering land bridge: The Na-Dene The Eskimos The Aleuts B. Everyone’s first exposure to Literature is oral: Lullabies, bedtime stories, and nursery rhymes Native American culture, oral tradition is the means by which the young learned tribal history and beliefs. Required long periods of memorization, so Native Americans often used drum music as well as pictographs, knotted string, and wampum belt as memory aids. Notes from pages 20-22: C. Many Native American songs used rhythmic repetition rather than rhyme. Enable singer to communicate with animals, nature, and the world of the spirit. D. Many Native American peoples developed animal clans or societies. People attributed the animal characteristics to the clan: Ex. Bear-strong, dangerous, people Ex. The Mohawks with three animal clans: 1. Wolf 2. Bear 3. Turtle Thematic Link Explains how the world was created Expresses a Native American ideal of people living in harmony in nature. Focusing your Reading: Literary Analysis: Myth and Creation Myth Active Reading: Causes and Effects Creation Myth-Attempt to describe how the universe, the earth, and life on earth began and that most of the world’s cultures have their own stories explaining these mysteries. Myths were originally passed on through oral storytelling; many different versions of each myth Causes and Effects: Example One: What Exists: The Earth and what caused it to be is when a woman walked in a circle around dirt brought up from the ocean floor and placed on a turtle’s back. Symbolism: the woman’s actions symbolize the development of agriculture, the geological formation of the earth. Example Two: Effects of the death of the twins’ mother: Causes: the left-handed twin wanted to head for the light he saw; he was born through his mother’s armpit Effects: Useful plants grew from the mother’s grave; the right-handed twin was angry at his brother for killing their mother Creation Myths provide answers about how things came to be: How was the earth created in this myth? The muskrat brought soil from the bottom of the ocean, and the woman grew the earth from it. Why is the world made up of forces that seem to be in opposition to one another? Transformation of a Character: Common element of mythology; often used to explain natural phenomena Example: Natural feature explained by the grandmother’s transformation is the moon. Iroquois seem to believe that human nature is more reasonable or upright than it is unreasonable or devious. Belief is reflected by the fact that the righthanded brother, who is more upright, has a greater hand in creating people. Iroquois believe that human nature is fundamentally constructive (right-handed twin) and destructive (left-handed twin) People cannot be only one or the other-offers balance Questions-pg. 31 1. What are your thoughts about the creation myth? Found the myth interesting or how well they think it explained natural phenomena Comprehension Check: How did the animals help the woman who fell from the sky? The birds broke her fall, the sea turtle gave her a place to rest, and the muskrat brought her soil to make the earth and grow plants. Comprehension Check Continued: What are the differences between the twins? One is devious and crooked (left-handed twin) and the other is honest and upright (right-handed twin). What was the outcome of the duels between the twins? The right-handed twin won the final duel and cast his brothers’ body off the earth. He now rules the day, and the left-handed twin rules the night. 3. What are the most important things you learned about the values and way of life of the Iroquois from reading this myth? Respect for the balance of nature Belief in the world’s creation by a higher power Ritual dancing and prayer for plentiful harvests 4. Why do you think the Iroquois honor both the left-handed twin and the right-handed twin? The Iroquois acknowledge “crooked” and “straight minds” as being necessary to a balanced world. They see neither twin as wholly good or wholly evil and give thanks to each for his creations. They are the source of opposed forces in the world. “The World on the Turtle’s Back” Writing Option 1 or 2-pg. 32 Header in right hand corner of first page indicating Name, Date, Hour, TWTB Writing Option (1 or 2-State which one that you decided to do) See page 1283 in your textbook for Writing Option One Essays need and Introduction, 3 Body Paragraphs, and Conclusion MLA Cite; will be citing the Textbook and page numbers from the textbook. Only source to use; do not use any other sources. In-text citation example: In the Iroquois myth, it states, “still keeps watch over the realm of her favorite grandson” (30). Keep in mind “The World on the Turtle’s Back” is in quotation marks; not italicized because it is a myth.