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The UWL TESOL and ESL programs proudly welcome...

Sunny Dooley, Diné / Navajo Storyteller
Thursday, February 11, 2010
7-8:15 P.M., Valhalla, CC, UWL

Sunny Dooley is a UW-L Visiting Artist of Color brought to campus through a program funded by the Office of the Provost.

Additional events:

International students & Sunny share life experiences. Join us for hot cocoa and rice crispy bars.
Friday, February 12, 4 - 5:15 p.m., 332 CC, UWL, Saturday, February 13, 10:30 - 11:45 a.m., 151 Cowley, UWL

Sunny Dooley is a native speaker of Diné (Navajo) who teaches the language, traditions and stories to people living in the Navajo Nation. She also performs throughout the United States. From her perspective as a Diné storyteller, Ms. Dooley explains the cultural and historical contexts for the traditional stories from her matrilineal clan, the Saltwater People. In an interview following her 2008 performance at the National Museum of the American Indian (Smithsonian, Washington, D.C.), Ms. Dooley discussed perspectives on her role as a storyteller:

Navajo stories are long, usually taking days to tell, a challenge to interpret for short performances. New stories are created in what Dooley calls the "professional sphere." She says her own contributions "are personal stories of growing up in a bicultural world," adding, "I think that people...who are indigenous to their countries can relate to "the European conquest story." Indigenous cultures survived colonization. Dooley says that colonial legacies "are political systems that have...eroded our cultural integrity. And I think stories are reclaiming that integrity."

Terhune, Lea.  (2009, February 6). Teaching the Art of Being Human: Ancient Indigenous Storytelling Thrives.  America.gov: eJournal USA.  Retrieved May 20, 2009, from http://www.america.gov/st/peopleplace-english/2009/February/20090213170012mlenuhret0.6132471.html   

Ms. Dooley also holds the 1982-83 Miss Navajo title, judges Miss Navajo contests, and serves on the Miss Navajo Council Board. Her poetry and reflections on the contest are featured in the 2007 PBS documentary "Miss Navajo." 

For more information about the film, see http://www.pbs.org/independentlens/missnavajo/ or  http://missnavajomovie.com/index.html.

For information about the culture, traditions, and beliefs of the Diné (Navajo people), see http://navajopeople.org.