Blythe Family in Native Media

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Blythe Family in Native Media

I had the opportunity to interview Frank Blythe, who is my grandpa and Founding Executive Director of Native American Public Telecommunications, Inc. (NAPT), as well as my mom, Francine Blythe, who is Executive Director of the National Geographic All Roads Film Project. The three of us were in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at the same time and we got together for a cookout.

I remember watching screenings of Native films and documentaries as a young kid. I understood that grandpa was the Executive Director of NAPT, but I did not know the details of his work. In school, I was learning about the mainstream history of Native Americans but at home, I was learning about the other half of our survival.

My mom was interested in theatre and I can remember a time when she was a part of a traveling Native play ensemble. Later, she would have roles as extras in various film projects. I thought that film and theatre were her and grandpa’s thing and at that time, I did not have the desire to study film or theatre.

When I was hired as a Production Assistant at NAPT, I realized the significance and impact that Native media has to offer. After starting at NAPT, I began to co-host two Native American radio programs--Native Sounds Native Voices and The Drum--on 89.3 FM (KZUM) in Lincoln, Neb. When I proposed the idea of a conversation between the three of us, my grandpa and mom were both enthusiastic about the idea. This is the interview from our conversation from April 2011.

Written by Tobias Grant.

Interviews conducted and edited by Tobias Grant.

 
 

Stations

A provocative film from the American Indian perspective that reframes today’s controversial energy debate while the fate of the environment hangs in the balance.

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Educators

Complement classroom discussion about America's energy future with this film, and help students comprehend the debate about the best use of natural resources.