Nang Jáadaa Sg̱áana ‘Láanaa aa Isdáayaan (The Woman Carried Away by Killer Whales - Written in Haida)
Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI) has released its first-ever children’s book entirely in the Haida language, X̱aad Kíl.
The book, Nang Jáadaa Sg̱áana ‘Láanaa aa Isdáayaan, or The Woman Carried Away by Killer Whales in English, is part of Sealaska Heritage Institute’s award-winning Baby Raven Reads program.
The traditional Haida story features a hunter who successfully hunts a sea otter and forgets to thank the otter for its life. When he gifts the otter to his wife, it comes back to life and swims away. She jumps in after it and is captured by the SGaan, the killer whales. An adventurous rescue begins.
“The story is so ancient but we are still telling it today. The power of oral tradition is infinite,” said Janine Gibbons, Haida artist and illustrator of the book.
The Woman Carried Away by Killer Whales was translated by Skíl Jáadei Linda Schrack and Ilskyalas Delores Churchill. After Schrack did a first pass at translating the text, she consulted with esteemed Haida Elder Ilskyalas (Delores Churchill) to review the translation and help with corrections.
“I am forever grateful for her. 'Láa an sáa Hl gudánggang. (I hold her in high esteem),” Schrack said.
8½" x 10" hardcover. 40 pages. Published 2021.
YouTube video for the translations: