This article discusses efforts by tribal leaders and members of Cochiti Pueblo, one of the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico, to restore aspects of community life that had been damaged by federal programs-programs that had been carried out without careful study of how they might affect the community. The construction of a dam above the Pueblo by the Army Corps of Engineers nearly three decades ago resulted in the destruction of the pueblo's farmlands. It caused profound disruptions in the lives of the people in this agrarian community, not only in economic terms but in nearly every other aspect of life in the Pueblo. The loss of the indigenous language since the building of the dam is viewed by community leaders as the most crucial change because the language was the key to participation in the life of the community. This article documents these changes, and discusses steps being taken to revitalize the language, and to reclaim the community's future.
Benjamin, Rebecca; Pecos, Regis; Romero, Mary Eunice; and Filmore, Lily Wong
"Reclaiming Communities and Languages,"
The Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare: Vol. 25
, Article 7.
Available at: http://scholarworks.wmich.edu/jssw/vol25/iss1/7