Many promote Reconciliation as a “new” way for Canada to relate to Indigenous Peoples. In Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-Creation, Resurgence, and a New Emergence activist, editor, and educator Leanne Betasamosake Simpson asserts reconciliation must be grounded in political resurgence and must support the regeneration of Indigenous languages, oral cultures, and traditions of governance.

Simpson explores philosophies and pathways of regeneration, resurgence, and a new emergence through the Nishnaabeg language, Creation Stories, walks with Elders and children, celebrations and protests, and meditations on these experiences. She stresses the importance of illuminating Indigenous intellectual traditions to transform their relationship to the Canadian state.

Challenging and original, Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back provides a valuable new perspective on the struggles of Indigenous Peoples.

Part of our Indigenous Collection.

This work is alive with insight and creativity. Simpson’s words dance through the heart of Anishinaabe resurgence with hope, grace and beauty. It is a must read for everyone interested in re-energizing Indigenous movement throughout Turtle Island.

John Borrows, Robina Professor in Law, Policy, and Society, University of Minnesota Law School

Subject Social Science/Ethnic Studies/Native American Studies
Published April 2011
Price $19.95 CDN
Pages 168 pp (Paper)
Dimensions 5.5″ × 8.5″ × .5″
ISBN-10 1894037502
ISBN-13 9781894037501

View the electronic version of this book »

Related Titles

Reviews

  • Zainab Amadahy, in Black Coffee Poet writes:

    It took me quite a while to get through Dancing… Whipping through it would have been like gobbling down a gourmet feast. Instead, I savoured the experience, allowing feelings generated by the words to infuse my being, challenge or validate my thoughts and inspire me to new heights.

  • Damien Lee, in Briarpatch Magazine writes:

    As Simpson discusses in the last sections of the book, true reconciliation will occur when new generations of Anishinabek and other Indigenous peoples are able to enjoy their cultures, languages, territories and political systems free of state interference. Reconciliation thus requires a complete cessation of Canada’s interventions in Indigenous communities, including, for example, ceasing to co-opt Indigenous peoples’ self-determination movements, so that our leaders are able to relate to Canada in ways that honour unique Indigenous political traditions.

  • Pegi Eyers, in The Link writes:

    Leanne Simpson’s Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back is a beautifully crafted clarion call specifically directed to the Nishnaabeg Nation and the Mississauga Ojibway, the original inhabitants of the Kawarthas. Her new work is a blending of wisdom teachings from the Elders, stories that flow from myth and the oral tradition, illuminations of heart-knowledge (the Debwewin “truth”), studies on the Nishnaabeg language and stages of life, and solidresearch interspersed with brilliant observation.

  • Christine McFarlane , in Windspeaker writes:

    Dancing On Our Turtle’s Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-Creation, Resurgence And A New Emergence is a book that weaves many issues together but helps readers understand that in order for reconciliation to be meaningful to Indigenous people, we need to interpret it broadly and support Indigenous nations by regenerating everything that residential schools attacked and attempted to obliterate….. This book provides a valuable perspective on the struggles of Indigenous peoples but also highlights the rich and vibrant ways in which Indigenous people continue to engage themselves.

About the Author

Leanne Betasamosake Simpson is a renowned Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer and artist, who has been widely recognized as one of the most compelling Indigenous voices of her generation. Her work breaks open the intersections between politics, story and song—bringing audiences into a rich and layered world of sound, light, and sovereign creativity.

Working for over a decade an independent scholar using Nishnaabeg intellectual practices, Leanne has lectured and taught extensively at universities across Canada and has twenty years experience with Indigenous land based education. She holds a PhD from the University of Manitoba, is currently faculty at the Dechinta Centre for Research & Learning in Denendeh (NWT) and a Distinguished Visiting Scholar in the Faculty of Arts at Ryerson University. Leanne’s books are regularly used in courses across Canada and the United States including Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back, The Gift Is in the Making, Lighting the Eighth Fire (editor), This Is An Honour Song _(editor with Kiera Ladner) and _The Winter We Danced: Voice from the Past, the Future and the Idle No More Movement (Kino-nda-niimi editorial collective). Her paper “Land As Pedagogy” was awarded the Most thought-provoking 2014 article in Native American and Indigenous Studies. Her latest book, As We Have Always Done: Indigenous Freedom Through Radical Resistance is being published by the University of Minnesota Press in the fall of 2017.

As a writer, Leanne was named the inaugural RBC Charles Taylor Emerging writer by Thomas King. She has published extensive fiction and poetry in both book and magazine form. Her second book of short stories and poetry, This Accident of Being Lost is a follow up to the acclaimed Islands of Decolonial Love and was published by the House of Anansi Press in Spring 2017.

Leanne is also a musician combining poetry, storytelling, song writing and performance in collaboration with musicians to create unique spoken songs and soundscapes. Leanne’s second record f(l)light produced by Jonas Bonnetta (Evening Hymns), was released in the fall of 2016 on RPM Records. Leanne is Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg and a member of Alderville First Nation.

Also by Leanne Betasamosake Simpson