Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 17
- Grade: 12
Many promote Reconciliation as a “new” way for Canada to relate to Indigenous Peoples. In Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-Creation, Resurgence, and a New Emergence activist, editor, and educator Leanne Betasamosake Simpson asserts reconciliation must be grounded in political resurgence and must support the regeneration of Indigenous languages, oral cultures, and traditions of governance.
Simpson explores philosophies and pathways of regeneration, resurgence, and a new emergence through the Nishnaabeg language, Creation Stories, walks with Elders and children, celebrations and protests, and meditations on these experiences. She stresses the importance of illuminating Indigenous intellectual traditions to transform their relationship to the Canadian state.
Challenging and original, Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back provides a valuable new perspective on the struggles of Indigenous Peoples.
About the author
Leanne Betasamosake Simpson is a renowned Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer and artist, who has been widely recognized as one of the most compelling Indigenous voices of her generation. Leanne's books are regularly used in courses across Canada and the United States including Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back, The Gift Is in the Making, Lighting the Eighth Fire (editor), This Is An Honour Song (editor with Kiera Ladner) and The Winter We Danced: Voice from the Past, the Future and the Idle No More Movement (Kino-nda-niimi editorial collective). Her paper "Land As Pedagogy" was awarded the Most thought-provoking 2014 article in Native American and Indigenous Studies. Her latest book, As We Have Always Done: Indigenous Freedom Through Radical Resistance is being published by the University of Minnesota Press in the fall of 2017. As a writer, Leanne was named the inaugural RBC Charles Taylor Emerging writer by Thomas King. She has published extensive fiction and poetry in both book and magazine form. Her second book of short stories and poetry, This Accident of Being Lost is a follow up to the acclaimed Islands of Decolonial Love and was published by the House of Anansi Press in Spring 2017. Leanne is Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg and a member of Alderville First Nation.
Dancing on Our Turtle's Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-creation, Resurgence and a New EmergenceThis is a hopeful, in-depth academic analysis of political mobilizations and resurgences of indigenous cultures. Readers will gain an appreciation of the struggles and challenges of native communities revealed through Nishnaabeg celebrations and protests, conversations with elders and creation stories. Simpson’s goal is to share stories of resistance and resurgence in order to help future generations build on the emerging “Indigenous Renaissance”. By honouring holistic “circles of healing” and restorative justice intrinsic to aboriginal cultures, Simpson reinforces how “elders … inspire us to envision alternative futures.” Includes extensive footnotes.
Simpson is a Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer and activist.
Source: The Association of Book Publishers of BC. Canadian Aboriginal Books for Schools. 2011-2012.
Other titles by Leanne Betasamosake Simpson
A Short History of the Blockade
Giant Beavers, Diplomacy, and Regeneration in Nishnaabewin
The Cure for White Ladies
Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg
This is our Territory
Keetsahnak / Our Missing and Murdered Indigenous Sisters
Writers on Writing in Canada
This Accident of Being Lost
Songs and Stories
The Gift Is in the Making