Skip to main content

WALK IN MY SHOES: EXPLORING CULTURES IN AMERICA: Native American Literature

This website contains resources to support the study of multicultural literature for teens. It is a companion to a new Unified Arts course taught by Madge Klais at Akira Toki Middle School.

JUDGING CULTURAL AUTHENTICITY AND CULTURAL SENSITIVITY

CONTEMPORARY INDIAN LIFE

NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN NATIONS AND LOCATIONS

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PENOBSCOT PEOPLE

MEET JOSEPH BRUCHAC

Joseph Bruchac Storyteller & Writer

"Joseph Bruchac lives in the Adirondack mountain foothills town of Greenfield Center, New York, in the same house where his maternal grandparents raised him. Much of his writing draws on that land and his Abenaki ancestry. Although his American Indian heritage is only one part of an ethnic background that includes Slovak and English blood, those Native roots are the ones by which he has been most nourished. He, his younger sister Margaret, and his two grown sons, James and Jesse, continue to work extensively in projects involving the preservation of Abenaki culture, language and traditional Native skills, including performing traditional and contemporary Abenaki music with the Dawnland Singers.  (Text taken from the author's website.)

WHAT'S WRONG WITH THIS BOOK?

Our class will be reading this award-winning novel to look for examples of stereotyping, cultural in-authenticity, and cultural insensitivity.  Why do you think that many people now consider this to be a "horrible book"?  Why do you think that it is still in print and still taught in some schools?