Raven finds the First Men

A Raven Tale as told by Eldrbarry

This tale I know was told among the Haida, and probably other tribes of the Pacific Northwest.

In the original Haida story - Raven mates the Chitons with the groins of the men from the Clam shell, they experience strange emotions, then the Chitons, back again on the rocks, grow large and the first Haida - both men and women are "given birth from these" - The sexual correspondance of the clam with its male "foot", and the Chiton with its "labia" like lips is obvious - as are the allusions to intercourse and pregnancy. It is found in Bill Reid's and Robert Bringhurst's RAVEN STEALS THE LIGHT (Univ of Washington Press, 1984). Perhaps a little earthy for sixth graders - [the sexual connections between the Clam and it's extended foot (male); and the "labia" of the Chiton (female) while not obvious are there] it is an interesting story on the differences between the sexes - all one of Raven's tricks I like the concept presented that this is one of the "strengths of humanity". In my version, there is a depicting of the changing relationships between boys and girls as they grow up. This can be told with some degree of humor.

For more on Raven and the peoples of the Pacific Northwest, see my bibliography in Raven's Roost.

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