BC Core Competencies

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A is for Assimilation: The ABC's of Canada’s Aboriginal People and Residential Schools
Author: Len Fortune
Format: Coil Bound
  • This mini book is not meant to be accusatory, but is designed to put the basic facts/ truths down in simple words and design, providing an Aboriginal primer.

    A is for assimilation, although blunt in its approach, is aimed at teens and anyone who isn’t familiar with the basic history of the nation’s First People.

$24.95

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Aboriginal Music in Contemporary Canada: Echoes and Exchanges
Format: Hardcover
  • First Nations, Inuit, and Métis music in Canada is dynamic and diverse, reflecting continuities with earlier traditions and innovative approaches to creating new musical sounds. Aboriginal Music in Contemporary Canada narrates a story of resistance and renewal, struggle and success, as indigenous musicians in Canada negotiate who they are and who they want to be. Comprised of essays, interviews, and personal reflections by Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal musicians and scholars alike, the collection highlights themes of innovation, teaching and transmission, and cultural interaction. Individual chapters discuss musical genres ranging from popular styles including country and pop to nation-specific and intertribal practices such as powwows, as well as hybrid performances that incorporate music with theatre and dance. As a whole, this collection demonstrates how music is a powerful tool for articulating the social challenges faced by Aboriginal communities and an effective way to affirm indigenous strength and pride. Juxtaposing scholarly study with artistic practice, Aboriginal Music in Contemporary Canada celebrates and critically engages Canada's vibrant Aboriginal music scene. Contributors include Véronique Audet (Université de Montreal), Columpa C. Bobb (Tsleil Waututh and Nlaka'pamux, Manitoba Theatre for Young People), Sadie Buck (Haudenosaunee), Annette Chrétien (Métis), Marie Clements (Métis/Dene), Walter Denny Jr. (Mi'kmaw), Gabriel Desrosiers (Ojibwa, University of Minnesota, Morris), Beverley Diamond (Memorial University), Jimmy Dick (Cree), Byron Dueck (Royal Northern College of Music), Klisala Harrison (University of Helsinki), Donna Lariviere (Algonquin), Charity Marsh (University of Regina), Sophie Merasty (Dene and Cree), Garry Oker (Dane-zaa), Marcia Ostashewski (Cape Breton University), Mary Piercey (Memorial University), Amber Ridington (Memorial University), Dylan Robinson (Stó:lo, University of Toronto), Christopher Scales (Michigan State University), Gilles Sioui (Wendat), Gordon E. Smith (Queen's University), Beverly Souliere (Algonquin), Janice Esther Tulk (Memorial University), Florent Vollant (Innu) and Russell Wallace (Lil'wat).

$49.95

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America's Gift
Format: Paperback
  • What the world owes to the Americas and their first inhabitants

    The world was never the same after 1492. The encounter of two “old worlds” gave rise to a truly new world on both sides of the Atlantic. America’s Gift recalls the full significance of the contact made between Europe and the Americas, mistakenly called the “New World.” As Columbian intellectual German Arciniegas wrote: “From questions of astronomy to the food on our table, America began transforming Europe the moment European explorers set foot on American soil. And what a transformation it was!” Authors Käthe Roth and Denis Vaugeois ably use an alphabetical glossary to connect the particular to the universal as they reveal some of the vast contributions the Americas and their original inhabitants made to the world. America’s Gift takes readers from one epiphany to another. In other words, Europe became a new world in the true sense of the term.

$22.95

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Ceremony
Traditional Territory: Laguna Pueblo
Format: Paperback
  • More than thirty-five years since its original publication, Ceremony remains one of the most profound and moving works of Native American literature, a novel that is itself a ceremony of healing. Tayo, a World War II veteran of mixed ancestry, returns to the Laguna Pueblo Reservation. He is deeply scarred by his experience as a prisoner of the Japanese and further wounded by the rejection he encounters from his people. Only by immersing himself in the Indian past can he begin to regain the peace that was taken from him. Masterfully written, filled with the somber majesty of Pueblo myth, Ceremony is a work of enduring power.

    Leslie Marmon Silko was born in 1948 to a family whose ancestry includes Mexican, Laguna Indian, and European forebears. She has said that her writing has at its core “the attempt to identify what it is to be a half-breed or mixed-blood person.” As she grew up on the Laguna Pueblo Reservation, she learned the stories and culture of the Laguna people from her great-grandmother and other female relatives. After receiving her B. A. in English at the University of New Mexico, she enrolled in the University of New Mexico law school but completed only three semesters before deciding that writing and storytelling, not law, were the means by which she could best promote justice. She married John Silko in 1970. Prior to the writing of Ceremony, she published a series of short stories, including “The Man to Send Rain Clouds.” She also authored a volume of poetry, Laguna Woman: Poems, for which she received the Pushcart Prize for Poetry.

    In 1973, Silko moved to Ketchikan, Alaska, where she wrote Ceremony. Initially conceived as a comic story abut a mother’s attempts to keep her son, a war veteran, away from alcohol, Ceremony gradually transformed into an intricate meditation on mental disturbance, despair, and the power of stories and traditional culture as the keys to self-awareness and, eventually, emotional healing. Having battled depression herself while composing her novel, Silko was later to call her book “a ceremony for staying sane.” Silko has followed the critical success of Ceremony with a series of other novels, including Storyteller, Almanac for the Dead, and Gardens in the Dunes. Nevertheless, it was the singular achievement of Ceremony that first secured her a place among the first rank of Native American novelists. Leslie Marmon Silko now lives on a ranch near Tucson, Arizona.
    Larry McMurtry is the author of twenty-one bestselling novels, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Lonesome Dove and The Last Picture Show. He lives in Texas.

$24.00

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Chiwid
Author: Sage Birchwater
Traditional Territory: Tsilhqot'in
Format: Paperback
  • Chiwid was a Tsilhqot'in woman, said to have shamanistic powers, who spent most of her adult life "living out" in the hills and forests around Williams Lake, BC. Chiwid is the story of this remarkable woman told in the vibrant voices of Chilcotin oldtimers, both native and non-native.

    Chiwid is Number 2 in the Transmontanus series of books edited by Terry Glavin.

$16.00

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Crazy Horse's Girlfriend
Author: Erika T. Wurth
  • Margaritte is a sharp-tongued, drug-dealing, sixteen-year-old Native American floundering in a Colorado town crippled by poverty, unemployment, and drug abuse. She hates the burnout, futureless kids surrounding her and dreams that she and her unreliable new boyfriend can move far beyond the bright lights of Denver that float on the horizon before the daily suffocation of teen pregnancy eats her alive.

$23.50

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Curse of the Shaman: A Marble Island Story
Author: Michael Kusugak
Format: Paperback
  • Sometimes even shamans get cranky. That was baby Wolverine’s misfortune — to be cursed by an out-of-sorts shaman frustrated by his own baby daughter’s incessant crying. Not only has shaman Paaliaq forbidden the future marriage of Wolverine to Breath, Paaliaq’s beautiful but teary baby girl, he has cursed Wolverine, banishing him when he becomes a young man. And even when a contrite Paaliaq later revokes the curse, the shaman’s even crankier magic animal will not. Now Wolverine finds himself stranded on a barren island, locked in a life-or-death struggle to return to his home, his family and a very special young girl.

    Michael Kusugak, consummate storyteller and bestselling author,conjures up an Inuit tale of adventure, perseverance and first-time love shot through with humanity and humour. This is a story perfect for its pre-teen and Â’tween audience, where even the strong and the mighty have bad days, the bully gets his due and a dream can come true.

$12.99

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Dreaming in Indian: Contemporary Native American Voices
Traditional Territory: Various
Format: Hardcover
  • A powerful and visually stunning anthology from some of the most groundbreaking Native artists working in North America today.

    Truly universal in its themes, Dreaming In Indian will shatter commonly held stereotypes and challenge readers to rethink their own place in the world. Divided into four sections, ‘Roots,’ ‘Battles,’ ‘Medicines,’ and ‘Dreamcatchers,’ this book offers readers a unique insight into a community often misunderstood and misrepresented by the mainstream media.

    Emerging and established Native artists, including acclaimed author Joseph Boyden, renowned visual artist Bunky Echo Hawk, and stand-up comedian Ryan McMahon, contribute thoughtful and heartfelt pieces on their experiences growing up Indigenous, expressing them through such mediums as art, food, the written word, sport, dance, and fashion. Renowned chef Aaron Bear Robe, for example, explains how he introduces restaurant customers to his culture by reinventing traditional dishes. And in a dramatic photo spread, model Ashley Callingbull and photographer Thosh Collins reappropriate the trend of wearing ‘Native’ clothing.

    Whether addressing the effects of residential schools, calling out bullies through personal manifestos, or simply citing hopes for the future, Dreaming In Indian refuses to shy away from difficult topics. Insightful, thought-provoking, and beautifully honest, this book will to appeal to young adult readers. An innovative and captivating design enhances each contribution and makes for a truly unique reading experience.

$19.95

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Embers: One Ojibway's Meditations
Traditional Territory: Ojibway
Format: Paperback
  • "Life sometimes is hard. There are challenges. There are difficulties. There is pain. As a younger man I sought to avoid them and only ever caused myself more of the same. These days I choose to face life head on--and I have become a comet. I arc across the sky of my life and the harder times are the friction that lets the worn and tired bits drop away. It's a good way to travel; eventually I will wear away all resistance until all there is left of me is light. I can live towards that end."

    --Richard Wagamese, Embers

    In this carefully curated selection of everyday reflections, Richard Wagamese finds lessons in both the mundane and sublime as he muses on the universe, drawing inspiration from working in the bush--sawing and cutting and stacking wood for winter as well as the smudge ceremony to bring him closer to the Creator. Embers is perhaps Richard Wagamese's most personal volume to date. Honest, evocative and articulate, he explores the various manifestations of grief, joy, recovery, beauty, gratitude, physicality and spirituality--concepts many find hard to express. But for Wagamese, spirituality is multifaceted. Within these pages, readers will find hard-won and concrete wisdom on how to feel the joy in the everyday things. Wagamese does not seek to be a teacher or guru, but these observations made along his own journey to become, as he says, "a spiritual bad-ass," make inspiring reading.

$18.95

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First Nations 101
Author: Lynda Gray
Format: Paperback
  • First Nations 101 is an easy to read primer that provides readers with a broad overview of the diverse and complex lives of First Nations people. It is packed with more than 70 subjects including veterans, youth, urbanization, child welfare, appropriate questions to ask a First Nations person, feminism, the medicine wheel, Two-spirit (LGBTQ), residential schools, the land bridge theory, and language preservation. Author Lynda Gray endeavors to leave readers with a better understanding of the shared history of First Nations and non-First Nations people, and ultimately calls upon all of us - individuals, communities, and governments - to play active roles in bringing about true reconciliation between First Nations and non-First Nations people.

    288 pages

$20.00

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Great Musicians From Our First Nations
Format: Paperback
  • Follow the journeys of ten talented musicians from the Native community as they make their way to the top. All of them, whether their music is traditional drumming or mainstream rock, bring their own cultural traditions to their music.

    Rising stars Shane Yellowbird and Crystal Shawanda are steeped in country music. The Blackfire band combines punk rock with Dine’ music, while Four Rivers Drum has been drumming at powwows for more than fourteen years. Leela Gilday is an award-winning folk artist and Michael Bucher’s music protects sacred sites. Contrast classical guitarist Gabriel Ayala with rock guitarist Mato Nanji and learn about the talents of jazz vocalist Jamie Coon and Native American flutist Mary Youngblood.

$10.95

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Great Women From Our First Nations
Author: Kelly Fournel
Format: Paperback
  • The book profiles ten outstanding women leaders in the Native community. All of these successful, trailblazing women are stellar role models who have raised the profile of indigenous culture in North America. From heroines of the past to women making new history today, this exciting work of nonfiction reminds readers of the extraordinary contributions of Native Americans to our daily lives. Ages 7 and up.

$10.95

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Great Writers from our First Nations
Author: Kim Sigafus
Format: Paperback
  • A celebration of ten writers who have challenged stereotypes, told history from a perspective often silenced, and entertained millions of readers.

    Included is author Louise Erdrich, whose novel Love Medicine was the first in an award-winning series about the lives of several generations of Ojibwa families. Sherman Alexie, author of the semi-autobiographical The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, went on to win the National Book Award. Tomson Highway broke new ground with his play The Rez Sisters. Joseph Boyden based his novel Three Day Road in part on his grandfather’s experience fighting in the First World War. N. Scott Momaday re-wrote the history of the American West with his book House Made of Dawn. Nicola Campbell drew on her family’s experience of residential schools to write the children’s books Shi-shi-etko and Shin-chi’s Canoe. Also included are Marilyn Dumont (A Really Good Brown Girl), Tim Tingle (Walking the Choctaw Road), Joseph Bruchac (Buffalo Song), and Maria Campbell (Half-breed).



    The full list of writers profiled:

    • Sherman Alexie (Spokane/Coeur d’Alene, Washington) - The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
    • Louise Erdrich (Ojibwa, North Dakota) - Love Medicine (the Argus Series)
    • Joseph Boyden (Cree/Métis, Ontario) - Three Day Road
    • N. Scott Momaday (Kiowa/Cherokee, Oklahoma) - House Made of Dawn
    • Marilyn Dumont (Cree/Métis, Alberta) - A Really Good Brown Girl
    • Tomson Highway (Cree, Manitoba) - The Rez Sisters
    • Joseph Bruchac (Abenaki, New York State) - Buffalo Song
    • Maria Campbell (Métis, Saskatchewan) - Halfbreed
    • Nicola Campbell (Interior Salish/Metis, Alberta) - Shin-chi’s Canoe
    • Tim Tingle (Choctaw, Texas) - Walking the Choctaw Road

$10.95

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In the Shadow of Our Ancestors
Author: Wayne Arthurson
Format: Paperback
  • Searching through the annals of North American history uncovers the diverse and astounding contributions by the Natives of the Americas who formed the world we know today. In the Shadow of Our Ancestors explores the rich history of the Indigenous peoples of North America and leaves us in awe of their stunning achievements and inventions:

    The Great Law of Peace -- The ideals, words and symbols of the Iroquois Confederacy inspired the governments of the New World to form democracies that recognized, in their constitutions, the rights of all people

    Potatoes -- The lowly potato, a staple food of Natives for almost 15,000 years, was unknown outside the Americas until Europeans arrived; now, with almost 4000 varieties, it is the fourth most-consumed agricultural product in the world

    Sacagawea -- The settlement of western North America was inspired and influenced by the results of the Lewis and Clark expedition in the early 1800s, with the journey's success made possible because of a Native woman named Sacagawea, whose presence paved the way for the explorers to be seen as a peaceful party.

    Kayaks -- It may be that the Inuit of the Arctic were the first to circumnavigate the globe in these simple craft. Kayaks have been in use for at least 4000 years as a form of transportation and for hunting, and the technology spread throughout northern waters and was adopted by the Scots and the Irish

    Code Talkers -- During World War II, more than 400 Navajo soldiers, recruited by the United States Marine Corps, transmitted secret tactical messages over military telephone or radio communications using codes built upon their Native languages.

$18.95

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Indian Horse
Format: Paperback
  • In 2013-2014, Indian Horse was the award recipient for First Nation Communities Read.

    Saul Indian Horse is dying. Tucked away in a hospice high above the clash and clang of a big city, he embarks on a marvelous journey of imagination back through the life he led as a northern Ojibway, with all its sorrows and joys. With compassion and insight, author Richard Wagamese traces through his fictional characters the decline of a culture and a cultural way. For Saul, taken forcibly from the land and his family when he's sent to residential school, salvation comes for a while through his incredible gifts as a hockey player. But in the harsh realities of 1960s Canada, he battles obdurate racism and the spirit-destroying effects of cultural alienation and displacement. Indian Horse unfolds against the bleak loveliness of northern Ontario, all rock, marsh, bog and cedar. Wagamese writes with a spare beauty, penetrating the heart of a remarkable Ojibway man. Drawing on his great-grandfather's mystical gift of vision, Saul Indian Horse comes to recognize the influence of everyday magic on his own life. In this wise and moving novel, Richard Wagamese shares that gift of magic with readers as well.

$21.95

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