The Navajo Nation constitutes an independent governmental body that which manages the Navajo reservation in the Four Corners area, including over 27,000 square miles of land in Arizona, Utah, and New Mexico. The Navajo language is spoken throughout the region with most Navajo speaking English as well.

The Navajo are speakers of a Na-Dené Southern Athabaskan languages known as Diné bizaad (lit. 'People's language'). The language comprises two geographic, mutually intelligible dialects.

Historically, the structure of the Navajo society is largely a matrilineal system, in which women owned livestock and land. Once married, a Navajo man would move to live with his bride in her dwelling and among her mother's people and clan.

Daughters (or, if necessary, other female relatives) were traditionally the ones who received the generational property inheritance. The children are "born to" and belong to the mother's clan, and are "born for" the father's clan. The mother's eldest brother has a strong role in her children's lives. As adults, men represent their mother's clan in tribal politics. The clan system is exogamous: people must date and marry partners outside their own clans, which for this purpose include the clans of their four grandparents.

All images were taken  by Donovan Shortey. Visit Website: 

Rez Dog - Navajo 

The Shoe Game, Keshjee', is centuries old and is not a "game." This sacred Navajo ceremony tells and shows the story of how the cycle of day and night came to be. Késhjéé', as a lattice of choices, represents life and the fact that the natural order of things cannot be changed. Not every choice can be correct, but the lessons are learned and experience is gained. Neither lying or cheating can change the outcome and the payment of a fee of yucca stems is still required.

Junior boys Chicken Dance 

"Drums of Summer"

A Navajo apprentice 

"Impatient Performer" 

Radmilla Cody singing the National Anthem 

A Perseid meteor burns up in Earth's atmosphere during the 2015 Perseid's Meteor Shower. The statue is a monument dedicated to the Navajo Code Talkers that resides at the Navajo Tribal Park & Veteran's Memorial in Window Rock, Arizona.

The Horned Toad, a grandfather to the Navajo, is believed to bring blessings and prosperity to all that hold him. If ever lost - ask Cheii - and he will help you to find your way.

Respect Elders

Women of the Navajo - Women Are Sacred 

United Family Front - Water Is Life 

Children - Future of the people 

Tsé Biiʼ Ndzisgaii [Monument Valley, Utah]

Responses to " A photographic voyage into America's largest Native American tribe, the Diné."

  1. Unknown says:

    beautiful photos of a land of people full of life and devotion for one another, wonderful share.

  2. louis says:

    Nice,to to see,a the thriving culture,of the American's,the Dine.

  3. TouchArt says:

    Beautiful. Thank you.

  4. I miss the Navajo Nation and my friends there.

  5. Unknown says:
    not .com
    Thank you for posting these. Beautiful ...

  6. Anonymous says:

    Wonderful photos, wish there were a bit more narrative. I'd love to know more about the photographer and the occasions!

  7. Anonymous says:

    A'ho makes me lonesome to go back

  8. Unknown says:

    As a Diné, I disagree with the assertion that, "As adults, men represent their mother's clan in tribal politics." Further, I want to clarify that some of the photos feature plains-style dress, not Diné. This might be explained by the fact that many Diné participate in the pan-Indian Pow-Wow lifestyle.

  9. Unknown says:

    There is only one language. There are regional differences in pronunciation, but those differences are not enough to assert that they are different dialects.

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