Preserving Indigenous Language: Danica Miller and the Lushootseed Language Institute

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"Lushootseed is a modern langauge--the problem is that historically it's been taught as an academic language and one that's sort of dead and of the past." --Danica Miller

Research by National Geographic and the Living Tongues Institute for Endangered Languages names the Northwest Pacific Plateau as a hotspot for the most rapid loss of indigenous language. 

Assistant Professor Danica Miller teaches American Indian Studies at UW Tacoma In an effort to counteract this loss, The University of Washington Tacoma and the Puyallup Language Program are offering a two-week Lushootseed Language Institute course. Offered through the UW Tacoma Professional Development Center, the course will be facilitated by Assistant Professor Danica Sterud Miller, a Puyallup tribal member. The Lushootseed Language Institute plans to offer the course every summer, and expects it to divide into a beginner and intermediate program by the third year.

For Autumn quarter, Miller will teach Introduction to Indigenous Studies;  American Indian Literature; The American Indian Movement; and Contemporary Native American Women's Literature. Along with Assistant Professor Michelle Montgomery, Miller coordinates the American Indian Studies minor in UW Tacoma's School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences.

Learn more about the Lushootseed Language Institute on the Professional Development Center web page. 

Read the Puyallup Tribal News course announcement, UWT to offer Lushootseed immersion program this summer, published May 26, 2016.

Read more about Miller's work with the Lushootseed Language Institute in Saving the language that brought us 'Seattle' by Chetanya Robinson published May 26, 2016, on

Written by: 
Meridith Hatch / May 26, 2016