Free screenings planned in SD for Lakota language film

VERMILLION, S.D. (AP) - Free public screenings have been scheduled across South Dakota for a documentary that chronicles the efforts to save from extinction the Lakota language.

“Rising Voices” highlights how people on reservations in the Dakotas are using classroom instruction, immersion preschools and other tools to preserve the Lakota language, which is spoken by fewer than 6,000 individuals nowadays.

Some of the public screenings are scheduled for Nov. 5 at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion, Nov. 10 at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre and Nov. 14 at The Journey Museum and Learning Center in Rapid City.

The film also addresses the effects of the assimilation policy that forced Native American children into boarding schools, where students were punished when they were caught speaking in their native tongues.

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