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Chasing Voices

J. P. Harrington posing with three Cuna (Tule) people while making Dictaphone recordings of Cuna language and songs, 1924
National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution. Courtesy of American Public Television
J. P. Harrington posing with three Cuna (Tule) people while making Dictaphone recordings of Cuna language and songs, 1924. [BAE GN 4305 A, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution.]

Premieres Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV + Wednesday, Dec. 8 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2 (not available on demand)

From 1907 until his death more than 50 years later, ethnologist John Peabody Harrington crisscrossed the U.S., chasing the voices of the last speakers of Native America's dying languages. Moving from one tribal community to the next, he collaborated with the last speakers to document every finite detail before their languages were lost forever.

"Chasing Voices" chronicles Harrington’s work and traces the impact of his exhaustive research on Native communities working to restore the language of their ancestors.

Chasing Voices: The Story of John P. Harrington: Trailer
Ernestine DeSoto and Her Granddaughter Regina speak on learning their native language of Chumash
Courtesy of Daniel Golding
Ernestine DeSoto and Her Granddaughter Regina speak on learning their native language of Chumash as a way to stay connected at the AICLS “Breath of Life" conference.

Credits:

Producer/ Director: Daniel Golding. Presented by Vision Maker Media and Hokan Media LLC. Distributed by American Public Television.