Our Voices


Our Voices

Native Stories of Alaska and the Yukon

Edited by James Ruppert and John W. Bernet

394 pages


September 2001


$25.00 Add to Cart

About the Book

Storytelling is a precious, vibrant tradition among the Native peoples of the Far North. Collected here for the first time are stories from the communities of interior Alaska and the Yukon Territory. These are the tales the people tell about themselves, their communities, and the world they inhabit.
Our Voices showcases twenty storytellers and writers who represent a full range of Athabaskan and related languages of Alaska and the Yukon. Both men and women recount popular tales of ancient times that describe the origins of social institutions and cultural values, as well as meaningful, sometimes intimate stories about their own lives and families or the history of their people. As representatives of an art transmitted through countless generations and now practiced with renewed interest and vigor by people reclaiming their cultural heritage, these narratives create a broad, brightly colored, richly detailed picture of the world of the Far North, present and past.

Author Bio

James Ruppert is a professor of English and Alaska Native studies, and John W. Bernet is a professor emeritus of English, both at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Ruppert's books include Mediation in Contemporary Native American Fiction.


"This outstanding collection of Athabaskan oral traditions contains stories of 14 cultural groups in Alaska and the Yukon. . . . A valuable resource for students, scholars, and general readers alike, this collection stands out as exceptional even among the excellent collections available." —Choice

"Editors [Ruppert and Bernet] have done a tremendous service to the presentation and preservation of Native American literary craft with their new book. Readers will immediately note its twofold importance: it contributes to the historical archive of Native American traditional stories from Alaska and the Yukon while presenting the most significant narratives as told by Athabaskan storytellers."—Library Journal

"Here the reader can experience the richness and diversity of an oral literature belonging to the northern interior of northwestern North America."—Robin Ridington, author of Trail to Heaven: Knowledge and Narrative in a Northern Native Community