Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Canada Reads: The Inconvenient Indian// My Thoughts On The Elimination.
For those of you who haven't heard of Canada Reads, it a yearly "battle of the books." This year the theme was breaking barriers, changing perspectives, challenging stereotypes and illuminating issues.
I've been backing The Inconvenient Indian on Canada Reads since I saw it on the long list. As soon as it was eliminated, I felt so sad. This book is breaking barriers in so many ways. Thomas King brings forth issues that are important, relevant and still happening today. He's not the "angry" Indian, and he doesn't want to be.
His book simply wasn't written before, and as First Nation, and an"Inconvenient" Status Native, I learned alot. I grew up, and was educated in city schools, living in Montreal most of my life. Most of my knowledge about First Nations people came from my own research in post secondary education. My education didn't include much Native history. I never had the materials to educate myself before college and university. I truly believe The Inconvenient Indian needs to be taught, because we need to open up the doors to communicate. This book has the potential to break so many barriers, and begin to get people talking.
When The Inconvenient Indian was eliminated, I was genuinely upset and emotional but then I thought about the audience's "gasp" and realized they were just as shocked as I was. I checked Twitter, and many people were frustrated that it was eliminated. This made me hopeful, and surprised. This book was voted Number 1 online, and I realized that it's already starting to get people talking. I'm glad that Craig Kielburger debated this book, he spoke so eloquently about it. He truly gets it! I really do think this book should be in every school. This is the material that I needed in school. It's not angry, it has humor, and it opens the readers eyes. We need to change perspectives and stereotypes. We don't want this to be the "suffering Olympics" we want to educate. Education is key. These issues are real, their present TODAY!! So many people think these issues are long gone, and we're just rehashing history
I really wanted Canada Reads to be about the books, and their themes. I don't want it to be about panelists who just want their books to win. I really felt today was a strategic vote to eliminate the most popular book. I'm not going to be watching the rest of the debates, because I'm not interested in the other books. I feel like the panelists are too divided.
Did you watch today? What were your thoughts?
You'll notice that I have a new tab on my blog called "Native Literature" and this is a personal project of mine. I've been working on it for a few weeks. There's been alot of talk about "reading diversely" in the blogosphere, and I thought about it, and decided reading diversely to me, means highlighting and reviewing books by Native authors. We buy the books that we see and hear about. We buy the books that are displayed in bookstores. I want to change my reading habits, and read books that are important to me. Maybe, others will read them too.
Here is my review of The Inconvenient Indian, that I wrote in 2013.
"Thomas King is readable, relatable and he doesn’t sugarcoat the issues. It’s hard to find good historical books that are readable, but Thomas King succeeds." -Mrs Q Book Addict