What’s New: Book Presentation/Signing- Not Extinct: Keeping the Sinixt Way

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Join us on Wednesday, April 17th between 2 and 3 pm at the Greenwood Public Library or on Thursday, April 18th at the Gateway (Stekthal) Learning Circle, Entwined Trees Park in Midway at 1:30 pm (come prepared for the weather) for a Book Presentation and Signing of Not Extinct: Keeping the Sinixt Way.

Many years in the making, this book is part of a multi-pronged project by the Blood of Life Collective.
For over a year, Blood of Life Collective members gathered to listen to and record Sinixt storytellers and knowledge-keepers Marilyn James and Taress Alexis telling the stories of the captik??, the Sinixt oral history. They were entertained week after week by the antics of Snk?lip – the trickster Coyote – and the goings-on of the other Animal Beings who people these stories. These traditional stories as well as a few contemporary ones form the backbone of Not Extinct: Keeping the Sinixt Way. The stories are available for free audio download by purchasers of the book in their original oral format.

As Marilyn writes in the Introduction, “The stories that inform this book are the stories that depict the captik??s. They are the creation stories of this particular landscape, of our People. Captik??s guide us, they tells us about the laws, the laws of this land, laws that dictate our lives, our cultural paths, how we behave. Here, in the tum xúla?x?, these stories guide us.”

Also recorded were discussions about each story which were transcribed into a written format. These explorations of the meanings and contemporary relevance of each story form the contents of the book alongside a captivating illustration and a settler’s reflection for each chapter. The Sinixt authors explore many aspects of their living culture including food, games, language, hunting and other cultural practices as well as the impact of the 1956 bureaucratic genocide of their people in Canada.

Full-page, colour and black and white illustrations by 17 different regional artists help illuminate the Sinixt ancestral and contemporary relationship with the land and waters of the upper Columbia River watershed. Each chapter is rounded out by a reflection on the story and/or discussion by one of ten settler authors. The illustrations and reflections by these contributors give readers further opportunities to engage with the stories. Their perspectives represent the interest of increasing numbers of people in developing respectful and decolonizing relationships between Indigenous and settler peoples.

The work of the Blood of Life collective has been funded by the Canada Council for the Arts Aboriginal Storytelling Program, the BC Council for the Arts and the Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance of the Columbia Basin Trust. Vital support was also provided by the Nelson and District Women’s Centre and Kootenay Co-op Radio.

 For Location and Contact Information, click here.