Tribal college produces rap song in Dakota

The Sisseton-Wahpeton College in South Dakota has produced what is believed to be the first rap song in the Dakota language.

"Wicozani Mitawa" or "My Life," is a song about a young man's struggles. It was written by Tristan Eastman, 20, and translated into Dakota by tribal elders.

More than 250 CDs of the song are being distributed to young people on the reservation. The Sisseton-Wahpeton Sioux Tribe has made language preservation a priority in hopes of keeping it alive for future generations. Only about 3 percent of 11,000 tribal members speak Dakota.

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Spreading the word: Project uses translated rap music as means for younger American Indians to learn native language (The Fargo Forum 9/12)