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Indigenous Languages

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100 Days of Cree
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Cree (Nehiyawak);
Grade Levels: 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

As an Elder once said, "Learn one Cree word a day for 100 days, and emerge a different person."

In 100 Days of Cree, Neal McLeod offers us a portal into another way of understanding the universe--and our place within it--while demonstrating why this funny, vibrant, and sometimes salacious language is "the sexiest of them all" (according to Tomson Highway).

Based on a series of Facebook posts, the 100 short chapters or "days" in the book present a chain of related words, some dealing with the traditional--the buffalo hunt, the seasons--and others cheekily capturing the detritus of modern life--from Internet slang to Johnny Cash songs to Viagra.

The result is both an introduction to the most widely spoken Indigenous language in Canada and the opportunity to see the world, and ourselves, in another way.

Reviews
"The nonfiction book is divided into 100 themes and offers Cree words and English explanations for everything from traditional subjects such as powwows and medicine to modern subjects such as Facebook and Star Wars. It also includes a guide to pronunciation written by Arok Wolvengrey, a linguist and the author of a Cree-English dictionary. 'When we think about indigenous languages, there’s a part of us that thinks they’re dying languages, ' URP publisher Bruce Walsh said. 'And then this manuscript comes in that demonstrates a living, vital language.' McLeod said that he and Wolvengrey worked to keep a balance between traditional usage and modern adaptations. 'To revitalize our languages, we have to do two things: we have to document the classical terminology, because within that terminology are all of our metaphors and idioms; but we also have to think of how to put old words together, to coin words, to describe the contemporary world.'" — Laura Godfrey, Publishers Weekly

Additional Information
325 pages | 5.50" x 7.00"

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$24.95

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A Story as Sharp as a Knife
Authors:
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Haida;
Grade Levels: 10; 11; 12; University/College;

A seminal collection of Haida myths and legends; now in a gorgeous new package.

The linguist and ethnographer John Swanton took dictation from the last great Haida-speaking storytellers, poets and historians from the fall of 1900 through the summer of 1901. Together they created a great treasury of Haida oral literature in written form.

Having worked for many years with these century-old manuscripts, linguist and poet Robert Bringhurst brings both rigorous scholarship and a literary voice to the English translation of John Swanton's careful work. He sets the stories in a rich context that reaches out to dozens of native oral literatures and to myth-telling traditions around the globe.

Attractively redesigned, this collection of First Nations oral literature is an important cultural record for future generations of Haida, scholars and other interested readers. It won the Edward Sapir Prize, awarded by the Society for Linguistic Anthropology, and it was chosen as the Literary Editor's Book of the Year by the Times of London.

Bringhurst brings these works to life in the English language and sets them in a context just as rich as the stories themselves one that reaches out to dozens of Native American oral literatures, and to mythtelling traditions around the world.

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$24.95

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A Tea in the Tundra / Nipishapui Nete Mushuat
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 12; University/College;

In this bilingual English-Innu poetry collection, Joséphine Bacon challenges our traditional notions of culture and perception, landscape and wilderness, the limits of experience, and the nature of human being. With a surreal blend of emotions and memories, A Tea in the Tundra / Nipishapui Nete Mushuat portrays a complex and ever-shifting landscape of possibilities. The author passionately reveals a finely wrought sensibility, which elevates the subtle scenery of life's everyday events.

Additional Information
96 pages | 5.50" x 8.50" | Translated by Donald Winkler 

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$16.95

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Aaniiih/Gros Ventre Stories
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 10; 11; 12; University/College;

The first-ever collection of Anniiih/Gros Ventre narratives to be published in the Aaniiih/Gros Ventre language, this book contains traditional trickster tales and war stories. Some of these stories were collected by Alfred Kroeber in 1901, while others are contemporary, oral stories, told in the past few years. 

As with the previous titles in the First Nations Language Readers series, Aaniiih/Gros Ventre Stories comes with a complete glossary and provides some grammar usage. Delightfully illustrated, each story is accompanied by an introduction to guide the reader through the material.

The Aaniiih/Gros Ventre people lived in the Saskatchewan area in the 1700s, before being driven south during the 1800s to the Milk River area in Montana, along the USA/Canada border.

Educator Information
This book is published in the Aaniiih/Gros Ventre language. An English glossary is provided at the back of the book. 

The Canadian Indigenous Books for Schools list recommends this resource for Grades 10-12 for these subjects: English Language Arts, Indigenous Language Studies, Language Studies.

Series Information
Aaniiih/Gros Ventre Stories is part of the First Nations Language Readers series. With a mix of traditional and new stories, each First Nations Language Reader introduces an Indigenous language and demonstrates how each language is used today. The University of Regina Press’s long-term goal is to publish all 60+ Indigenous languages of Canada.

Additional Information
120 pages | 5.50" x 8.50" | Compiled and Edited by Terry Brockie and Andrew Cowell
 

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$24.95

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Aiviq (Inuktitut): Life With Walruses
Authors:
Artists:
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12;

Massive, elusive, and always deserving of respect, the walrus is one of the Arctic’s most recognizable animals. For thousands of years, Arctic residents have shared the coastlines and waters of the Arctic with these huge beasts. Often misunderstood by people who have not had first-hand encounters with them, walruses are known to those who share their habitat as somewhat unpredictable creatures, always deserving of caution when encountered. From close encounters with angry walruses, bent on destroying boats and chasing off humans to witnessing the attentive care of a walrus mother with its calf, this book gives readers from outside the Arctic a first-hand look at what life alongside walruses is really like.

Aiviq: Life with Walruses features stunning wildlife photography by acclaimed photographer Paul Souders accompanied by first-hand accounts from people living alongside this enormous sea mammal.

Educator Information
This book is entirely in Inuktitut.

Additional Information

72 pages | 11.00" x 8.00"
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$24.95

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Akaitsinikssiistsi: Blackfoot Stories of Old
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: University/College;

This collection of eight stories represents an introduction to Niits'powahsini, the Blackfoot language, and includes a pronunciation guide and Blackfoot-to-English glossary.

In these stories Ikkinainihki, "Gentle Singer," recalls events from childhood and tells of her Elders, the cold weather of the Plains, a crying spirit, rattlesnakes, and more. This collection opens with a prayer and a small essay on the importance of preserving Niitsi'powahsini.

Blackfoot Stories of Old will be of great value to native speakers, new learners, linguists, and those looking for insights into the Blackfoot people, who live in present-day Alberta and Montana.

Educator Information
The third volume in the First Nations Language Readers series--meant for language learners and language users--this collection presents eight Blackfoot stories told by Lena Russell, a fluent speaker of Blackfoot from the Kainai (Blood) reserve in southern Alberta.

In contract with other Algonquian languages, such as Cree and Saulteaux (Ojibwe), Blackfoot is not usually written in syllabics, so these stories are presented in the Blackfoot language using the Roman alphabet, together with the English translation. The spelling system is based on the conventions of the International Phonetic Alphabet, and should be transparent for native speakers of Blackfoot as well as for linguists. The Reader includes a Blackfoot-to-English glossary containing all the nouns, verbs, adjuncts, etc., found in the texts, as well as stress or pitch accents over the vowel or vowels which bear the accent.

Series Information
Akaitsinikssiistsi: Blackfoot Stories of Old is part of the First Nations Language Readers series. With a mix of traditional and new stories, each First Nations Language Reader introduces an Indigenous language and demonstrates how each language is used today. The University of Regina Press’s long-term goal is to publish all 60+ Indigenous languages of Canada.

Additional Information
96 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

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$24.95

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An Honest Woman
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian;
Grade Levels: 11; 12; University/College;

 An Honest Woman by Jonina Kirton confronts us with beauty and ugliness in the wholesome riot that is sex, love, and marriage. From the perspective of a mixed-race woman, Kirton engages with Simone de Beauvoir and Donald Trump to unravel the norms of femininity and sexuality that continue to adhere today.

Kirton recalls her own upbringing, during which she was told to find a good husband who would “make an honest woman” out of her. Exploring the lives of many women, including her mother, her contemporaries, and well-known sex-crime stories such as the case of Elisabeth Fritzl, Kirton mines the personal to loosen the grip of patriarchal and colonial impositions. 

An Honest Woman explores the many ways the female body is shaped by questions that have been too political to ask: What happens when a woman decides to take her sexuality into her own hands, dismissing cultural norms and the expectations of her parents? How is a young woman’s sexuality influenced when she is perceived as an “exotic” other? Can a woman reconnect with her Indigenous community by choosing Indigenous lovers? 

Daring and tender in their honesty and wisdom, these poems challenge the perception of women’s bodies as glamorous and marketable commodities and imagine an embodied female experience that accommodates the role of creativity and a nurturing relationship with the land.

Reviews
“Jonina Kirton is courageously honest about her life experiences as a female of Indigenous and immigrant ancestry. Many poems resonate deeply, as we identify with her personal quest to figure out who she is, and the unacceptable things done to her. Her raw honesty is unsettling and uncomfortable, because it can be our truth too. Her poems depict devaluation and dehumanization, grieving, lessons learned. Her poems offer important insights as to why there are thousands of missing and murdered Indigenous women.” — Senator Lillian E. Dyck

“When writing from the voice of between, writer and reader have no place to hide. Assumptions and camouflage fall away. Murdered, missing, and violated women and girl voices have been silenced. The story lethally repeats. Kirton picks over how she was raised familially and culturally like a crime scene. Too, she affirms, ‘I have been here forever and I will rise again and again.’ Tough, eloquent, revelatory, these poems are the very ones we are desperately in need of.” — Betsy Warland, author of Oscar of Between: A Memoir of Identity and Ideas

“I’m sure people have been looking at me strangely every time I gasp, but I can’t glance away from the page for even a second to notice. Some of the poems end sharply, with a punch; some deliberately leave me searching for the next line; others show the repetition of heartbreaking cycles of violence and oppression, but offer a portrayal of resilience, too.” — All Lit Up!

Educator Information
This book would be useful for Women's Studies, Creative Writing, English Language Arts, Poetry, and English courses.  Recommended for grades 11-12 and university-college students.  

Please be advised, this book contains explicit sexual references and references to sexual and physical abuse.

Additional Information
104 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"

 

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$16.95

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Anishinaabe ABC Mazina’igan
Artists:
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;
Grade Levels: Kindergarten; 1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

It's never too early to start teaching children their First Nations language, and Anishinaabe ABC Mazina'igan is a great tool to assist with learning.

This book is the second in a series by Language Facilitator, Wanda Barker. It is a great tool to assist with learning the Ojibwe language. Anishinaabe ABC Mazina’igan is filled with beautiful illustrations, Anishinaabemowin/Ojibwe sentences and their English translations. The images can serve as a starting point for discussion of the cultural relevancy of the sentences associated with each letter.

This book can be used by students, parents and teachers, young and old.  It is written in the double vowel writing system and is intended to show the sequence of the Ojibwe alphabet.  The images can serve as a starting point for discussion of the cultural relevancy of the sentences associated with each letter.

Educator Information
This book is written in the Ojibwe language with a glossary at the back in Ojibwe and English. It is useful for anyone wanting to learn the Ojibwe language. 

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$7.95

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Anishinaabemowin Alphabet
Artists:
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;

It’s never too early to start teaching children their First Nations language, and Anishinaabemowin Alphabet is the perfect place to begin. This book is filled with beautifully shaded illustrations, Anishinaabemowin/Ojibwe words and their English translations, and it can be used by students, parents and teachers young and old. It is written in the double vowel writing system and is intended to show the sequence of the Ojibwe alphabet. The images can serve as a starting point for discussion of the cultural relevancy of the word associated with each letter.

Educator Information
This book is written in the Ojibwe language.  An English translation for each word is provided at the back of the book.

 

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$7.95

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Becoming Tsimshian: The Social Life of Names
Authors:
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: University/College;

The Tsimshian people of coastal British Columbia use a system of hereditary name-titles in which names are treated as objects of inheritable wealth. Becoming Tsimshian examines the way in which names link members of a lineage to a past and to the places where that past unfolded. In investigating the different dimensions of the Tsimshian naming system, Christopher F. Roth draws extensively on recent literature, archival reference, and elders in Tsimshian communities. Becoming Tsimshian covers important themes in linguistic and cultural anthropology and ethnic studies.

Additional Information
296 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"

$33.95

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Blueberries and Apricots
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

In this, her third volume of poetry, this Aboriginal writer from Quebec again confronts the loss of her landscape and language.

On my left hip
a face

I walk
I walk upright
like a shadow

a people on my hip
a boatload of fruit
and the dream inside
women and children first

"A cry rises in me and transfigures me. The world waits for woman to come back as she was born: woman standing, woman powerful, woman resurgent. A call rises in me and I've decided to say yes to my birth."

Reviews
"Poetess, painter, actress, slammer ... Natasha Kanapé Fontaine speaks with a soft voice, but her words are powerful. In a few years, the young Innue has become a model for young people and for her community." —La Presse

Educator Information
Recommended in the Canadian Indigenous Books for Schools 2019-2020 resource list as being useful for grades 9-12 for English Language Arts and Social Studies.

Additional Information
72 pages | 5.00" x 7.50" | Translated from French by Howard Scott.

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$19.95

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Clinging to Bone
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: University/College;

Garry Gottfriedson's Clinging to Bone digs into the marrow, heart and soul of the human condition. Looking deeply into the Secwepemc (Shuswap) world of today, he examines betrayal, grief, love and survival. He states, "the broken winged sparrows are lost in flight, surviving starvation in the empty belly of wind." In "Foreigner" he describes how "my skin is the scent of Secwepemcúlucw / a rez Indian, a foreigner / in my own homeland / can you imagine that?" (where "Secwepemcúlucw" means land of the Shuswap). But he also sees humour in the very mechanics of surviving as an Indigenous individual in the Canada of today. His poetry will draw you into love, laughter and sorrow, but leave you contemplating your own survival. A glossary of Secwepemc words is included.

Additional Information
100 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"

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$17.95

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Coyote and Raven Go Canoeing: Coming Home to the Village
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous;
Grade Levels: University/College;

A lyrical, epic narrative about Aboriginal knowledge and education.

we are narrators narratives voices interlocutors of our own knowings 
we can determine for ourselves what our educational needs are 
before the coming of churches residential schools prisons 
before we knew how we knew we knew

In a gesture toward traditional First Nations orality, Peter Cole blends poetic and dramatic voices with storytelling. A conversation between two tricksters, Coyote and Raven, and the colonized and the colonizers, his narrative takes the form of a canoe journey. Cole draws on traditional Aboriginal knowledge to move away from the western genres that have long contained, shaped, and determined ab/originality. Written in free verse, Coyote and Raven Go Canoeing is meant to be read aloud and breaks new ground by making orality the foundation of its scholarship.

Cole moves beyond the rhetoric and presumption of white academic (de/re)colonizers to aboriginal spaces recreated by aboriginal peoples. Rather than employing the traditional western practice of gathering information about exoticized other, demonized other, contained other, Coyote and Raven Go Canoeing is a celebration of aboriginal thought, spirituality, and practice, a sharing of lived experience as First Peoples.

Reviews

"One of the clearest and most thorough pictures of an aboriginal view of the consequences of colonization that I have ever read."— Olive Dickason, emeritus, York University
"In the tradition of Gayatri Spivak, Homi Bhabha, Edward Said, Trinh Min-Ha, and other radically original intellectuals, Cole risks a new language to talk about the unthinkable."— Mary Bryson, Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology, University of British Columbia

Additional Information
352 pages | 7.00" x 9.50"

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$32.95

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Cree Dictionary and Pocket Phrase Book Set, N Dialect
Format: Paperback
Grade Levels: 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

“A good method of learning the Cree language, with its unique sounds, involves verbal communication between teacher and students.”

This Cree Dictionary and Everyday Phrases & Words book set was written by the last remaining fluent Cree Elders of Ochekiwi Sipi Cree Nation (Fisher River). Some of the Elders have passed on and this set is dedicated to their memory. The dialect is Maskekomowina – Swampy Cree, or N Dialect.
In both books, the English words are translated into Cree using Roman orthography, phonetics, and Cree syllabics. The Dictionary is a 149-page, coil bound publication. The Everyday Phrases & Words is a pocket-sized, 39-page booklet.

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$12.95

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Cree: Language of the Plains
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Cree (Nehiyawak);

Cree, Language of the Plains explores some of the intricate grammatical features of a language spoken by a nation which extends from Quebec to Alberta. Although there are five dialects within these geographic boundaries, only the "y" (or Plains") dialect is presented here. The distinction has been made between, on one hand, learning about a language, or building language awareness, and, on the other hand, acquisition of a language or building fluency in it. This book contains an appropriate balance of both language learning and language acquisition activities. Includes tables showing verb conjugation, placement of person indicators, preverbs, connectives, and endings (singular and plural). There is also a reference grammar and verb list. Standard Roman Orthography is used.

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$24.95

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