Ojibwe

Little Miss Kwe

So the other day someone said, “I saw your blog, it said ‘qu-we.'”

For those that don’t know, I am Aboriginal. More specifically I am Three Fires. Even more specifically, Ojibwe, Odawa, Potawatomi. But I learned to speak three different dialects of Ojibwe back in elementary school and high school. I didn’t learn much beyond animals, numbers, places, directions, some actions which is one of the multigenerational effects of Residential schools: loss of language–as Aboriginal children weren’t allowed to speak their native tongue (if they did, they were severely punished).

One of the things I do remember being taught is that “Kwe” means “Woman” or “Lady.” Yes, there are different spellings and I am going off the spelling I was taught in elementary school by my favourite teacher: Mrs. Naogizic (whose name I forget how to spell, sorry!)

I don’t know why I chose “Little Miss Kwe” as my blog name. I guess I wanted it to have some sort of Aboriginal vibe to it. But in truth, I think it sounds nice… Little Miss Kwe. (Oh and “Kwe” is pronounced “q’way.”)

I figured I would write about this and share with it since someone already thought it said “qu-we” (and this person actually pronounced the “we” as the actual English word “we”). Not their fault, but I corrected them. “We” in Ojibwe is pronounced “way.” I guess that sums it up with what I am really trying to say.