Academia, traditional knowledge merge on the page
- Jamin Mike | May 19, 2016
Indigenous spirituality and the residential schools were front and centre as authors Blair Stonechild and Louise Bernice Halfe shared their lives from the passages of their new books “The Knowledge Seeker” and “Burning is this Midnight Dream”.
The esteemed authors had the full attention of the audience at the book launch at the First Nation University of Canada. Stonechild’s “The Knowledge Seeker,” is principally about reclaiming Indigenous spirituality after going through residential schools and also his own personal experience in earning a PhD. Stonechild, a member of Muskowpetung First Nation talks about the understanding of ceremonies and proper relationships with creation. “There are so many important things that need to be learned—especially by our youth,” he said with a sense of pride for his Cree-Saulteaux heritage.
Halfe has been writing for over twenty years and says she usually gets really obsessed about a subject which triggers her to write. Her book, “Burning in this Midnight Dream”, is a compilation of poems and was written in both the Cree/English. With her experience of the residential school system, she expresses her thoughts and heart on each page. “It is on reconciliation… it’s a more personal and intimate form of writing that I’ve really undertaken,” said Halfe.
Born and raised on the Saddle Lake Cree Nation in Alberta, Halfe now resides and works in Saskatoon. Halfe is an alumnus of FNUniv who also received an Honorary Degree of Letters (Ph. D) from Wilfred Laurier University. Both authors have great knowledge in academia and understand traditional protocol as well, and it is reflected in their writing.