"This story of a child is heartbreaking and important. It brings into dramatic focus why we need reconciliation." - James Daschuk, author of Clearing the Plains
This memoir offers a courageous and intimate chronicle of life in a residential school.
Now a retired fisherman and trapper, the author was one of an estimated 150,000 First Nations, Inuit, and Metis children who were taken from their families and sent to government-funded, church-run schools, where they were subjected to a policy of "aggressive assimilation."
As Augie Merasty recounts, these schools did more than attempt to mold children in the ways of white society. They were taught to be ashamed of their native heritage and, as he experienced, often suffered physical and sexual abuse.
But, even as he looks back on this painful part of his childhood, Merasty's sense of humour and warm voice shine through.
"At 86, Augie Merasty has been a lot of things: Father. Son. Outdoorsman. Homeless. But now he is a first-time author, and the voice of a generation of residential-school survivors.... The Education of Augie Merasty is the tale of a man not only haunted by his past, but haunted by the fundamental need to tell his own story...one of the most important titles to be published this spring." Globe and Mail
"Historically significant." Publishers Weekly