Speaking of Nature
Robin Wall Kimmerer
In the English language, we reserve the pronouns of personhood for humans—”he,” “she,” “they”—and not for animals, plants, and landscapes. Yet in many of America’s indigenous languages, such barriers are dissolved, and so, too, is the sense of distance between human and nonhuman. Robin Wall Kimmerer, a speaker of Potawatomi and an enrolled member in the Citizen Band Potawatomi, writes about how to find a language that affirms our kinship with the natural world.