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What does it mean to be a Navajo (Din ) person today? What does it mean to "respect tradition"? How can a contemporary life be informed by the traditions of the past? These are the kinds of questions addressed by contributors to this unusual and pathbreaking book.
All of the contributors are coming to personal terms with a phrase that underpins the matrix of Din culture: Sa'ah Naagh Bik'eh H zh n.
Often referred to simply as SNBH, the phrase can be translated in many ways but is generally understood to mean "one's journey of striving to live a long, harmonious life." The book offers a variety of perspectives of Din men and women on the Din cultural paradigm that is embedded in SNBH. Their writings represent embodied knowledge grounded in a way of knowing that connects thought, speech, experience, history, tradition, and land. Some of the contributors are scholars. Some are Din who are fighting for justice and prosperity for the Navajo Nation. Some are poets and artists. They are united in working to preserve both intellectual and cultural sovereignty for Din peoples. And their contributions exemplify how Indigenous peoples are creatively applying tools of decolonization and critical research to re-create Indigenous thought and culture in a present day that rarely resembles the days of their ancestors.
More than 300,000 people self-identify as Din today. Every one must grapple with how to make a life that acknowledges Sa'ah Naagh Bik'eh H zh n
. Din Perspectives
is unique in bringing such personal journeys to the public eye.