Thursday, 12 March 2015

Canada Reads- part 2

 Canada Reads theme:
"Books that can change perspectives, challenge stereotypes and illuminate issues".
  I was anxious to start reading this book by Thomas King.  I had  heard him speak several years ago and thought I would really appreciate this book.
  It began with a light-hearted look at history from an Indian perspective and I was loving the first chapter.  But soon, the humour turned to sarcasm, then cynicism.  Eventually, it just seemed like a rant.
  His rage at the mistreatment and abuses of Indians, led to lists of atrocities and grievances.  He never felt that the many apologies that the Indians have received were sincere.
  I had hoped to understand the heart of the Indian- the need for the land, the desires of their hearts, but as he skipped back and forth across the border, I realized that there are so many different tribes- all having different ideas.
  And they definitely do not want to assimilate into Canadian society as Trudeau suggested.
  Page 61: In 1969, a Lakota scholar wrote, "Our foremost plight is our transparency.  People can tell just by looking at us what we want, what should be done to help us, how we feel, and what a 'real' Indian is really like".  Really?
  I know that they want to be a distinct society and live life on their own terms.  But just what does that involve?
  I had to force myself to finish the book.  And I longed for native writers such as Richard Wagamese who let us into their hearts, thereby touching ours.
  This was a book filled with rancour.  "Native people stopped asking for justice and demanded it".

My opinion:
I would like to see this book eliminated from the contest immediately.

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