Forgotten People

2020, 19 minutes

An intimate look at how Navajos from different generations of a single family strive to keep their traditional values to pass on to future generations while finding their own place in American society.

Debbie has lived on Navajo reservations throughout her entire life. She's lived with resentment against Americans since childhood spent in Indian Boarding School. Having lost her husband by nuclear contamination, she became involved with a Navajo activist group "Forgotten People". Her brother Jeremiah took a mainstream American path and succeeded in his business. He manages to balance his life between in both Navajo and American ways. Now he's close to retirement, Jeremiah tries to give back to the Navajo community by helping with ceremonies and rituals. Jeremiah's daughter Rachel grew up among white people in the city, but she enjoys helping her family and other Navajo at the reservation. She used to feel stigmatized due to her heritage, but now she takes pride in being Navajo. Despite generational differences, each shares the common connection to their land and Navajo culture – and they remind themselves of who they are through traditions, reunions, and ceremonies.

Connected mandy members:

Kenji Hayasaki
Director/ Producer / Videographer / Editor