Blackfoot Language “Thunder Radio”

The Browning, MT Blackfoot radio station “Thunder Radio”, or in Blackfoot: Ksistsikam ayikinaan (voice from nowhere), has become wildly popular since it premiered November 20, 2010 from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM. So far, their weekday hours have been extended from 6:00 AM – 12:00 AM. Linguist Darell R. Kipp a.k.a. Apiniokio Peta (Morning Eagle) broadcasts language lessons Mondays-Tuesdays and stories from elders on Wednesdays and the weekend from 12:00 – 1:00 PM, fitting in with the Piegan Institute‘s goals. On Sundays, passages of the Bible are read in Blackfoot. Blackfoot vocabulary are also tailored to current weather conditions and holidays. The radio program is helping the language stay up-to-date by forcing them to create new Blackfoot terms for contemporary objects rather than resorting to code-switching.

If you’re interested in learning Blackfoot from scratch, check out Marvin Weatherwax’s online course materials with podcast.

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