Le Petit Prince is a story beloved by readers across the globe. It is an aadizookaan, an epic teaching, that speaks to our souls about the secrets and lessons of being alive. As the story moves from one language to another, the core meaning remains the same, but each translation offers a perspective on being that contributes to our shared understanding. This is the magic of the little prince—by listening to him, we learn to listen better to ourselves and all the beings who have secrets to share. Anishinaabemowin is the language of the Odawa, Potawatomi, and Ojibwe people centered in the Great Lakes region of North America. It is currently used in more than two hundred Anishinaabe communities in Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, North Dakota, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. Like many Indigenous languages, its vitality is precarious; what is written today will be the bridge future Anishinaabe children have to the past.
Margaret Noodin is an American poet and Anishinaabemowin language teacher. Angela Mesic is Associate Lecturer of the first year Anishinaabemowin courses at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Michael Zimmerman Jr. is an enrolled member of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians of Michigan and Indiana. He has formerly worked as their Tribal Historic Preservation Officer, Tribal Historian, and lead Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act consultant. Susan Wade is a dissertator in history at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her work focuses on maple sugar production by Indigenous women in the Great Lakes region during the fur trade era.