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Our Native Land: In our own words, a new Native literature

The Story


Maria Campbell's novel Halfbreed "changed the direction of our words," says Our Native Land reporter Beth Paul. "It made Indians into people with emotions," she says, introducing a special episode on literature. Maria Campbell explains her insatiable drive to write, Howard Adams talks about his part history, part manifesto, Prison of Grass. George Manuel outlines a new philosophy of "Indian-ness" from The Fourth World and Mi'kmaq poet, Rita Joe, shares her writing method.

Medium: Radio
Program: Our Native Land
Broadcast Date: March 13, 1976
Guests: Howard Adams, Maria Campbell, Rita Joe, George Manuel, Michael Poslsuns
Host: Beth Paul
Producer: Bernelda Wheeler
Duration: 26:23
This clip has been edited for copyright reasons.

Did You know?


• Maria Campbell has written at least six more books and works as a writer and producer for television, radio and the stage. A scholar and professor, Campbell is also a prominent activist for Métis and First Nations women. She was named a Distinguished Canadian in 2006 and an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2008.

• Howard Adams continues his work as a Métis activist and scholar. In 1995, he published A tortured people: the politics of colonization.

• George Manuel served as president of the National Indian Brotherhood, which later became the Assembly of First Nations, from 1971-1976. He advocated for international indigenous rights as president of the World Council for Indigenous People from 1976-1981. As president of the Union of British Columbia Chiefs from 1979 to 1981, Manuel organized the Indian Constitutional Express - a train that went from British Columbia to Ottawa drawing attention to native rights.

• Rita Joe released her first book of poetry two years after this interiew. She went on to publish seven books, including five poetry anthologies and an autobiography, The Song of Rita Joe. Known as the poet laureate of the Mi'kmaq nation, she was born in Wycocomagh, N.S. in 1932 and attended residential school until eighth grade. She was awarded the Order of Canada in 1990 and the National Aboriginal Achievement Award in 1997. Rita Joe died on March 21, 2007 at age 75.

 


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