The Mohegan Tribe

HERITAGE

Our Stories

Culture expressed through oral tradition tells a different and often deeper story than historic records can.

Oral tradition is a selective, yet democratic form of spoken record-keeping. Indigenous cultures pass down their oral traditions through select culture-bearers; these individuals have been trained since a young age to interpret their traditions. However, unlike written record-keepers (whose writings were and are still inaccessible to many), spoken records (when recited) are subject to the correction and refutation of an entire community -- whether the members are literate or not. Furthermore, stories passed down through oral tradition are fully understood by the story-keeper, enabling him or her to update archaic language and make the story more intelligible to succeeding generations.