Rising Voices grantee publishes book based on traditional stories told by Tének elders

Luis Flores with the book “In tsalpadh t’ilab i mam” in Mexico City in February 2020. Photo by E.Avila.

In 2015, Rising Voices awarded a microgrant to Luis Flores, a young Tének (also known as Huastec) from the community of Isidro, Tampaxal, in the State of San Luis Potosí in Mexico. He has been working extensively with revitalizing his native language through campaigns on social media and he is the founder of the project Lenguas Web.

His project proposed to help revitalize the language by engaging children from a local school to collect stories from elders in the community. These traditional stories were recorded and collected as a series of videos uploaded to a YouTube channel and became the basis of an e-book titled “In tsalpadh t’ilab i mam” with illustrations by a local artist. We’re pleased that Rising Voices was able to support this project since it came directly from the community which identified the need to preserve traditional stories as a way to pass on this knowledge to younger generations. I was given a copy of the book when I met Luis at a conference in early 2020 in Mexico City.

Back cover of the book “In tsalpadh t’ilab i mam” with the Rising Voices logo. Photo by E. Avila

Nearly five years later, the book has been published thanks to the support of the Center of Research and Higher Studies in Mexico (CIESAS for its initials in Spanish) to be distributed to local schools. The book will be officially launched during the virtual Festival of National Indigenous Languages (FLIN for its initials in Spanish) of which Rising Voices is a partner and which is being organized by the National Institute of Indigenous Languages (INALI for its initials in Spanish). Please join us on October 29th at 22:00 hrs UTC on the Facebook page of INALI to learn more about this book project.

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