Bruchak suggests that when teachers are selecting aboriginal
literature that they, "seek out books that depict characters from a
well-defined individual native nation - as opposed to generic Indians. I
say this because there are popular books that were written without
understanding these specific differences. For example in Annie and the
Old One by Miska Miles - which is a story of a little girl dealing with
the death of her grandmother - descriptions and illustrations are
totally incorrect for the Navajo culture. And no one in Native American
culture would call his or her grandmother: old one". Books like
this are insensitive due to ignorance, not through intention - but it
hurts just as much."
He asks that we keep the
following in mind:
Make available books that reveal
today's Native American cultures.
Be prepared to talk about the ways in
which Native American cultures have influenced world culture.
Talk about values Native American
cultures share, such as respect, sharing, and reverence for living
Avoid books that suffer from what
Joseph Bruchac refers to as "The Dances with Wolves
Syndrome" -- books in which all Indians are noble and all
white people are bad. Any children's book that builds up one culture
at the expense of another ultimately keeps racial tension alive.
Oyate is a Native organization working to see that our lives and histories
are portrayed honestly, and so that all people will know our stories belong to
us. For Native children, it is as important as it has ever been for them to know
who they are and what they come from. It is a matter of survival. For all
children, it is time to learn the truth of history. Only in this way will they
come to have the understanding and respect for each other that now, more than
ever, will be necessary for life to continue.
A thematic listing of resources with Aboriginal content. You may subscribe for a small charge.
On Not Seeing Oneself
by Debbie Reese
with Literature in the Elementary Classroom
Aboriginal Authors and Illustrators
Aboriginal Authors by Tribe
Links to sites with Canadian First Nations Authors
American Children's Books
A Legend To Life
Home in Children's Picture Books by Canadian Aboriginal Authors
Select Bibliography of Children's Books by and about Aboriginal Peoples for Ages
4 - 14
Including a bibliography, fiction, non-fiction, picture books, myths and
legends for older children, aboriginal language material and also indexed by
aboriginal peoples represented.
First Nations Native Creation Myths
Nations Periodical Index
Since it began in 1993, Kegedonce Press
has been committed to the development, promotion, and publication of the work of
Indigenous writers nationally and internationally.
Kegedonce Press is a Native owned and operated company based at
Neyaashiinigmiing, on the traditional territory of the Chippewas of Nawash First
Nation. We are committed to our guiding vision of publishing and promoting works
of the Indigenous writers of Turtle Island and supporting the enterprise of
Indigenous artists, graphic illustrators, designers, editors, printers and
others in related fields.
Pemmican Publications Inc. is a Metis Cultural and Educational Publishing
House established in 1980 by the Manitoba Metis Federation Inc. as a creative
and vocational outlet for the Metis people of Manitoba. Pemmican is the only
Metis book Publishing House in Canada. Pemmican promotes Metis Culture and
History through it's publications, many of which depict traditional lifestyle,
the art of oral storytelling, living in harmony with nature and the environment,
and the rich and living heritage of the Metis and the Province of Manitoba.
A small fine-art and literary publishing
house, Penumbra has carved its niche with Northern and Native literatures, as
well as children's literature, poetry, belles lettres, translations of
Scandinavian literature, history, mythology, and art books. In recent years,
we've added biographies and memoirs to the ensemble.
Theytus Books is an Aboriginal owned and run publishing company which
publishes Aboriginal authors. Theytus' general philosophy has remained intact
since its inception and is contained in the Company's name. Theytus is a
Salishan word which means preserving for the sake of handing down.
to Aboriginal Writers, Storytellers and Publishers
The objectives of the Grants to Aboriginal
Writers, Storytellers and Publisher Program are to encourage the artistic
development of established and emerging Aboriginal writers and storytellers, to
encourage the development of Aboriginal publishers and collectives, and to
increase the appreciation for Aboriginal literature in Canada. Aboriginal
peoples include Status, Non-status, Metis and Inuit people.
A COMPUTER LISTSERV FOR INDIGENOUS* EDUCATORS IN CANADA
KEEPERS OF OUR CULTURE
*Aboriginal People, First People, First Nations,
Native, Indian, Inuit, Metis
- Both Non-Status and Status.