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Kim Anderson

I am a Cree/Métis writer and educator, with roots in western Canada but born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario. I’ve always been interested in education, and have worked in literacy, cross-cultural education (with Canada World Youth), educational tourism, and community based education with Indigenous peoples. This work afforded me plenty of travel in my youth, for which I am grateful! I became a mother in 1995, which propelled me into a new phase both personally and professionally, and I began to research and write about motherhood and culture-based understandings of Indigenous womanhood. Since that time I have become known as an advocate of Indigenous women and families, and I continue to do community engaged research and teaching in this area. Prior to taking a faculty position at Wilfrid Laurier University, I worked for over fifteen years doing social and health policy consulting for Indigenous communities and organizations. As a historian, I have been focused on documenting the genius and beauty of non- patriarchal, kin-centric Indigenous societies, and then strategizing around reclaiming these ways as part of decolonization and healing.

Injichaag: My Soul in Story: Anishinaabe Poetics in Art and Words
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;
Grade Levels: University/College;

This book shares the life story of Anishinaabe artist Rene Meshake in stories, poetry, and Anishinaabemowin “word bundles” that serve as a dictionary of Ojibwe poetics. Meshake was born in the railway town of Nakina in northwestern Ontario in 1948, and spent his early years living off-reserve with his grandmother in a matriarchal land-based community he calls Pagwashing. He was raised through his grandmother’s “bush university,” periodically attending Indian day school, but at the age of ten Rene was scooped into the Indian residential school system, where he suffered sexual abuse as well as the loss of language and connection to family and community. This residential school experience was lifechanging, as it suffocated his artistic expression and resulted in decades of struggle and healing. Now in his twenty-eighth year of sobriety, Rene is a successful multidisciplinary artist, musician and writer. Meshake’s artistic vision and poetic lens provide a unique telling of a story of colonization and recovery.

The material is organized thematically around a series of Meshake’s paintings. It is framed by Kim Anderson, Rene’s Odaanisan (adopted daughter), a scholar of oral history who has worked with Meshake for two decades. Full of teachings that give a glimpse of traditional Anishinaabek lifeways and worldviews, Injichaag: My Soul in Story is “more than a memoir.”

“This is the story of an Anishinaabe journey across time and space. This is more than an autobiography of trauma, it is a celebration of resilience.”– Margaret Noodin, Associate Professor, English and American Indian Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Educator Information
Table of Contents
Family Tree
Community Tree
Section 1 Odinimanganikadjigan
Section 2 Nibinaabe
Section 3 Wikwedong
Section 4 Bimisi
Section 5 Miskwadesshimo
Section 6 Papawangani
Section 7 Migisiwiganj

Additional Information
240 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text

Life Stages and Native Women
Format: Paperback

A rare and inspiring guide to the health and well-being of Aboriginal women and their communities.

The process of "digging up medicines" - of rediscovering the stories of the past - serves as a powerful healing force in the decolonization and recovery of Aboriginal communities. In Life Stages and Native Women, Kim Anderson shares the teachings of fourteen elders from the Canadian prairies and Ontario to illustrate how different life stages were experienced by Métis, Cree, and Anishinaabe girls and women during the mid-twentieth century. These elders relate stories about their own lives, the experiences of girls and women of their childhood communities, and customs related to pregnancy, birth, post-natal care, infant and child care, puberty rites, gender and age-specific work roles, the distinct roles of post-menopausal women, and women's roles in managing death. Through these teachings, we learn how evolving responsibilities from infancy to adulthood shaped women's identities and place within Indigenous society, and were integral to the health and well-being of their communities. By understanding how healthy communities were created in the past, Anderson explains how this traditional knowledge can be applied toward rebuilding healthy Indigenous communities today.

Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text