The Sun Still Rises in the Same Sky: Native American Literature

The Sun Still Rises in the Same
Sky: Native American Literature
Important points from the article by Joseph Bruchac
Oral Tradition
Native American Literature was originally created and
maintained through oral tradition, a practice of
spreading the literature from generation to
generation by word of mouth.
Native American Culture
Native Americans use stories to teach
moral lessons and convey practical
information about the natural world.
The following is a clip from Disney’s
“Brother Bear” illustrating Native
American oral tradition:
Native American Literature…
Reflects a view of the natural world that is
more inclusive than Western Literature.
What does inclusive mean?
What does this reveal about Native
American Literature?
Move on to the next slide, and you will find
Native American Literature…
“Inclusive” means including a great deal or
a broad spectrum of information, people,
items, etc.
 Native American Literature includes
animals, people, and nature.
 Animals and people are often
interchangeable in myths and folk tales.
The Power of the Metaphor
American Indian cultures show a “keen
awareness of the power of the metaphor” (21).
 Words are as powerful and alive as humans.
 Songs and chants can make things happen (i.e.
the “rain dance”)
 Similes and metaphors are drawn from nature
and are highly developed.
Current Impact
Oral traditions “preserve historical continuity” (21).
 However, the Native American culture is ever-changing
and adaptive to the ever-changing world.
 Their beliefs and values, however, have been preserved
over centuries.
Works Cited
Bruchac, Joseph. “The Sun Still Rises in the
Same Sky: Native American Literature.”
Elements of Literature: Fifth Course. Eds.
Kathleen Daniel, Richard Sime, Thomas F.
Hirsch, and Patricia Cambridge. Austin:
Holt, Reinhart and Winston, 2003. 20-21.