Peter Fidler and the Métis

Peter Fidler and the Métis is an excellent primer on Métis history and culture for middle years readers. The book is the personal reflection of Métis artist and author Donna Lee Dumont on her direct ancestors, the Hudson’s Bay Company explorer and mapmaker Peter Fidler and his Cree wife, Mary Mackegonne. Interwoven with this self-reflection is the author’s discussion of the formation of Métis culture during the fur trade, the racism that forced many Métis to deny their heritage, and the proud place that the Métis now have as one of Canada’s founding peoples. Writing about her childhood, which consisted of many summers spent picking and eating berries and learning about Aboriginal medicinal and healing traditions from her grandmother and her elders, Donna Lee Dumont poignantly takes the reader back to a gentler, more environmentally friendly time. She concludes by writing about her pride in being a Métis artist, author, educator, mother, and grandmother. Lavishly illustrated in bright, vibrant acrylics, Peter Fidler and the Métis is one woman’s enchanting journey to document her Métis identity.

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