Dawn Wink: Dewdrops

Writing, Teaching, Language, Landscape, Life

Raven’s Time Series

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This piece about the Raven’s Time Lecture Series just came out in Sunday’s edition of the Santa Fe New Mexican. The piece came out en español last week and is included here.
I smiled as I wrote the title. One time Mom said to me, “Have you noticed that all your books have birds in the title? Which bird are you going to write about next?”

Raven on hill outside Chimayó, NM.

SFCC lecture series aims to tie cultures together
By Patricia De Dios | For The New Mexican
Posted: Saturday, September 08, 2012

When did migration change to immigration? That’s the theme of a series of lectures titled “Raven’s Time: Wildness and Beauty in the Southwest,” by writer and teacher Dawn Wink. The series is offered by Santa Fe Community College’s Continuing Education program and begins Oct. 3.

Wink, an associate professor in the Department of Teacher Education at SFCC, has 20 years of experience teaching in multicultural settings. She said that the creation of borders in the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo between Mexico and the United States forced neighboring cultures to break the ties that once bound them as brothers, and that the results can still be seen in today’s immigration debates.

For example, although she grew up in Arizona, Wink said that, “The [immigration] positions adopted by Arizona in the last years, I don’t even recognize them. Immigration wasn’t the political rallying point that it is now. Perhaps there existed a certain feeling of ‘us’ versus ‘them’ in certain circles, but nobody spoke openly of that.”

The history of the Southwest is the story of displacement: the Native people by the Spanish conquistadors in regions that are now Arizona and New Mexico, then the Spanish by the Anglo explorers. Over time, the three groups decided to stay in the Southwest and have found a way to negotiate their own place within the same land, she said.

At the same time, as the late Brazilian educator Paolo Freire said, “Suffering exile implies recognizing that one has left his or her context of origin; it means experiencing bitterness, the clarity of a cloudy place where one must make right moves to get through.” In that light, the New Mexican who has felt the rod in school for speaking the language of her parents, the Native American who woke up with a fence surrounding her pueblo and the immigrant who excuses herself for speaking with an accent, all know what exile is, Wink said.

In 2009, Wink began trying to mend the deep fractures between the cultures of the Southwest through education in the community. In her series of lectures, Wink said she will explore symbols found in nature, including the raven, skulls, water and turquoise, to help students try to find common ground among social inequity.

Wink, who first heard the word gringa when she was studying in Chihuahua as a 16-year-old girl, has traveled throughout Spain, and most recently, she taught continuing education to Guatemalan public school teachers in Antigua, Guatemala. She is passionate about trying to create invisible ties in the common ground that all these cultures possess.

“It’s interesting to see how the present-day theme of immigration is being promoted by people who also at some point in the history of this country were displaced,” she said. “What I hope is that through a political and socio-cultural dialogue related to the region of Santa Fe, the participants in this course explore the emotions that we as a community have not been able to adequately express, and that we [can] make a little more sense of the place in which we live.”

“Raven’s Time” takes place from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays from Oct. 3 through 24 in classroom 414A on the SFCC main campus. For information on registration, call SFCC’s Continuing Education Department at 505-428-1676.

http://www.santafenewmexican.com/Local%20News/090912SFCC

En español
Conciliando las diferencias

Patricia De Dios | La Voz de Nuevo México
Posted: Sunday, September 02, 2012 – 9/2/

Diversas opiniones respecto a los temas de inmigración se han generado con las nuevas propuestas presidenciales en camino a las elecciones. Los ciudadanos en Estados Unidos necesitan estar informados sobre las implicaciones no solo legales, sino sociales que estos cambios pueden generar en el país. Al respecto, el Colegio Comunitario de Santa Fe ofrece una serie de conferencias bajo el título “El Tiempo del Cuervo: Tierra Salvaje y Belleza en el Suroeste” a cargo de Dawn Wink, escritora y catedrática que ha investigado y analizado los movimientos sociales y símbolos en esta región desde varias perspectivas.

Wink toma como tema central de estas conversaciones la pregunta, “¿Cuándo se convirtió la migración en inmigración?”. La creación de fronteras ha obligado a culturas hermanas a romper los lazos que fueron divididos en el Tratado de Guadalupe en el año 1848. Wink comenta, “Las posiciones adoptadas por Arizona últimamente, no las reconozco. No era el punto de convergencia que es ahora”, quien creció en ese estado. “Tal vez existía un cierto sentimiento de ellos contra nosotros entre ciertos grupos pero nadie hablaba de eso”.

Las divisiones con énfasis racial especialmente en el suroeste hacia aquellos que provienen de Latinoamérica son abismales. La historia nos muestra como los Nativo americanos fueron desplazados por los Españoles en la región de Arizona y Nuevo México, quienes a su vez fueron desplazados por los Anglosajones, sabiendo éstos de antemano que no pertenecían a estas tierras. Sin embargo los tres grupos deciden quedarse en la región y encuentran la manera de negociar un lugar dentro de la misma tierra.

En una cita el pedagogo brasileño Paulo Freire menciona, “Sufrir el exilio implica reconocer que uno ha dejado su contexto de origen; esto significa experimentar amargura y la claridad de un lugar confuso donde uno tiene que tomar el camino correcto para sobre-pasarlo”. El Nuevo Mexicano que experimentó la vara por hablar el idioma de sus padres, el Nativo americano que despertó con una cerca rodeando su pueblo y el inmigrante que se disculpa al hablar con acento, saben lo que es el exilio.

De aquí nace en el año 2009, la idea de Dawn Wink de acercar o enmendar las fracturas entre los tres grupos de esta región Suroeste a través de la educación a la comunidad. En ese año, Wink escribe un artículo sobre estas fracturas y ella lo hace basado en el reflejo en las escuelas públicas.

El cuervo, las calaveras, el agua, a la par de la turquesa, que la escritora asocia al viaje seguro y divino del ser humano, son símbolos explorados en las pláticas tratando de dar un terreno común a estas desigualdades sociales. Experimentando la vida en México cuando era una adolescente y por primera vez escuchó el término ‘gringa’, al referirse a ella, hasta sus viajes por España y recientemente a Latinoamérica, han despertado en Wink el interés por crear un lazo invisible que una a todos estos pueblo que tienen tanto en común.

Los conceptos de familia y cultura son arraigados en los Nuevo Mexicanos, los Nativo americanos y los Mexicanos. “Es interesante ver cómo los temas actuales de inmigración son tratados por personas que han sido a su vez desplazadas en algún punto en la historia de nuestro país”, comenta Wink, “lo que deseo es lograr a través de un diálogo político y sociocultural de Santa Fe, que los participantes exploren las emociones que no hemos podido expresar y hagamos sentido del lugar en que vivimos.”

http://www.santafenewmexican.com/lavoz/090312RavensTimeArticle

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Author: Dawn Wink

Dawn Wink is a writer and educator whose work explores the beauty and tensions of language, culture, and place.

7 thoughts on “Raven’s Time Series

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  2. Dear Dawn, I took this rich, deep class with you when you offered it online through Story Circle. I would take it again in a heartbeat if you were to offer it again. This is a class, the contents of which will stay with me forever. I can only imagine how much richer and deeper it would have been to take it with you in person, to share open discussions, share the ideas and the stories. Thank you for all you are doing for your work to “create invisible ties in the common ground that all these cultures possess”.

  3. Pingback: “Raven’s Time: Wildness and Beauty” Online class this summer | Dawn Wink: Dewdrops

  4. Hi Alice, Thanks so much. I wish you lived closer, too. Would love to talk about these ideas together. See you soon at WWW!

  5. This is a nice article written about your upcoming lectures, Dawn. Wish I lived closer Most interesting topic…

  6. Thanks so much, Christy. Yes, would love to see you there or before!

  7. Great post, Dawn! I will try to make one of your lectures in the Ravens Series this October. I am out of town most of the month – Oct. 10 is really my best chance. Hope to see you then if not before!

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