Source: Virtual Museum of Canada
Focus: Elementary students
Summary: Lesson 5: Stories and Songs
Dane-zaa have preserved our traditional stories and songs for many generations. Dane-zaa elders are expert storytellers and enjoy telling stories to people of all ages. Dane-zaa traditional stories are intended both to entertain and to teach about our traditional values and how to survive in the bush. They also provide Dane-zaa with ways to think about the impact of oil and gas industrialization on our traditional lands. Go to About Dane-zaa Stories to find out more about our traditional Dane-zaa storytelling traditions.
Dane-zaa traditional songs have also been preserved for hundreds of years and are a vital part of our contemporary Dane-zaa oral traditions. There are two types of Dane-zaa songs.
- Mayiné are personal medicine songs that we are given on vision quests by our spirit helpers. These songs are private and rarely sung in public. None of these personal songs can be found on our website.
- Nááchę yiné are songs that are brought back from Heaven by our Dane-zaa Dreamers. These songs may tell the future or contain messages from God and our ancestors in Heaven to be shared with our people. These songs are meant to be performed in public. Songkeepers, like our Doig River Drummers, keep these songs alive by performing them at our Dreamers’ Dances and at community gatherings. Go to About Dane-zaa Songs to find out more about our Dane-zaa traditional singing.