Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Barriers Begin With Language Difficulties.

Byline: Journal Staff Report

Dean Johnson's move to the Taos Pueblo in 1995 was fairly unusual, according to Joe Sando, director of the Pueblo Indian Study and Research Center in Albuquerque.

Not that many American Indians whose ancestry lies in northern New Mexico pueblos but who were born and raised elsewhere move back, the 77-year-old Sando said.

The few who do can face significant barriers in trying to connect with their heritage and communities, he said.

"One of the main things is to be able to speak the language," said Sando, who was born on the Jemez Pueblo. "If he doesn't speak the language, he's not one of them."

Cultural and religious ceremonies, at Taos for instance, are conducted in the Tiwa language. …

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