Voices in the Circle: An Afternoon with Tshaukuesh Elizabeth Penashue

Please join us for the Winnipeg launch of Nitinikiau Innusi: I Keep the Land Alive, co-presented by the Winnipeg International Writers Festival as part of their Voices in the Circle initiative celebrating Indigenous writing in Canada.

Date: Sunday, November 10, 3:00 pm
Location: McNally Robinson Booksellers (1120 Grant Avenue), Winnipeg.
Cost: FREE

About the Book

Labrador Innu cultural and environmental activist Tshaukuesh Elizabeth Penashue is well-known both within and far beyond the Innu Nation. The recipient of a National Aboriginal Achievement Award and an honorary doctorate from Memorial University, she has been a subject of documentary films, books, and numerous articles. She led the Innu campaign against NATO’s low-level flying and bomb testing on Innu land during the 1980s and ’90s, and was a key respondent in a landmark legal case in which the judge held that the Innu had the “colour of right” to occupy the Canadian Forces base in Goose Bay, Labrador. Over the past twenty years she has led walks and canoe trips in nutshimit, “on the land,” to teach people about Innu culture and knowledge.

Nitinikiau Innusi: I Keep the Land Alive began as a diary written in Innu-aimun, in which Tshaukuesh recorded day-to-day experiences, court appearances, and interviews with reporters. Tshaukuesh has always had a strong sense of the importance of documenting what was happening to the Innu and their land. She also found keeping a diary therapeutic, and her writing evolved from brief notes into a detailed account of her own life and reflections on Innu land, culture, politics, and history.

Beautifully illustrated, this work contains numerous images by professional photographers and journalists as well as archival photographs and others from Tshaukuesh’s own collection.

About Voices in the Circle

Voices in the Circle: Celebrating Indigenous Writing in Canada, an initiative of the Winnipeg International Writers Festival (WIWF), was one of 200 exceptional projects across the country, funded by the Canada Council’s New Chapter grant. Throughout 2018 and 2019, the WIWF showcased Indigenous writers on stages around Winnipeg, and created mentorship opportunities in schools and community centres in communities throughout Manitoba as well as in Nunavut. We also partnered with CV2 and Prairie Fire to publish ndn country, an anthology of new Indigenous writing, edited by Katherena Vermette and Warren Cariou. Moving forward, Voices in the Circle continues as a partnership between WIWF, McNally Robinson Booksellers, and other community partners committed to celebrating the vitality, creativity, and insight Indigenous writers are contributing to our culture.

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