Coming Fall 2019:
Let the People Speak: Oppression in a Time of Reconciliation
by Sheilla Jones, with a foreward by Sheila North
J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing
Over the past fifty years, Canada’s Indigenous Affairs department (now two departments with more than 30 federal co-delivery partners) has mushroomed into a “super-province” delivering birth-to-death programs and services to First Nations, Inuit and Métis people. This vast entity has jurisdictional reach over 90% of Canada’s landscape, and an annual budget of some $20 billion. Yet Indigenous people have no means to hold this “super-province” accountable to them. Not a single person in this entity has been elected by Indigenous people to represent their interests. Not one. When it comes to federal Indigenous policy, ordinary Indigenous people in Canada are voiceless and powerless.
In Let the People Speak, author and journalist Sheilla Jones raises an important question: are the well-documented social inequities in Indigenous communities—high levels of poverty, suicide, incarceration, children in care, family violence—the symptoms of this long-standing, institutionalized powerlessness? If so, the solution lies in empowerment. And the means of empowerment is already embedded in the historic treaties. Jones argues that there can be meaningful reconciliation only when ordinary Indigenous Canadians are finally empowered to make their voices heard, and ordinary non-Indigenous Canadians can join with them to advance a shared future.
Fierce: Five Plays for High Schools
Edited by Glenda MacFarlane
A teenager is dead after facing sexual assault and cyberbullying. Two friends go camping, and one reveals a secret. A conflict between two band students erupts into violence. A young woman about to leave for university tries to hide a disturbing secret. A bereaved teen joins her school basketball team. Five new plays from some of Canada’s best playwrights reveal the passion, pain, humour, and hopes of young people in this exciting anthology for high schools. Included: Who Killed Snow White? by Judith Thompson, Out in the Open by Dave Deveau, A Bear Awake in Winter by Ali Joy Richardson, Admissions by Tanisha Taitt, and The Team by Michael Kras.
by Sean Dixon
In the early fall of 1885, P.T. Barnum’s Greatest Show on Earth toured southwestern Ontario, playing to sold-out crowds. On the bill, along with the snake charmer, the tightrope walkers, the contortionist, and the bearded lady, were 28 elephants, led by the world-renowned Jumbo. Between their stops in Guelph and London, the circus crews were packing up, and unscheduled freight train came hurtling down the track and ended the life of the most famous pachyderm in the world. A cast of larger-than-life characters brings the last performance of the legendary Jumbo to life.
Les Filles du Roi
by Corey Payette and Julie McIsaac
Les Filles du Roi (The King’s Daughters), a gorgeous new trilingual musical written in English, French, and Kanien´kéha (Mohawk), is the powerful story of Kateri, a young Kanien´kehá:ka girl, and her brother Jean-Baptiste, whose lives are disrupted upon the arrival of les filles due roi in 1665. They forge an unlikely relationship with young fille Marie-Jeanne Lespérance, whose dreams of a new life are more complicated than she could have imagined. Over the course of a year, Kanien´kehá:ka, French and English journeys collide, setting the stage for the Canada we know today. Payette’s music connects the heartbeat of the drum and the soaring voices of our female ancestors in a thrilling contemporary score, weaving three languages and rivalling the beauty of Canada’s most stunning landscapes.
The New Canadian Curling Club
by Mark Crawford
A Chinese medical student, a Jamaican Tim Horton’s manager, an Indian father of three, and a 17-year-old Syrian refugee walk into a curling club. It’s Monday night at a small-town rink and it’s the first-ever Learn to Curl class for new Canadians. Inspired by the local refugee resettlement program, community-minded Marlene organized this evening to welcome newcomers and “diversify the club.” But when she slips on the ice and breaks her hip, the club’s ice-maker, Stuart MacPhail—who also happens to be Marlene’s ex-husband—is forced to step in as head coach. Trouble is, Stuart has plenty of opinions about immigrants. What follows is the hilarious and inspiring story of a group of unlikely athletes who face off against the local prejudice and become a true team. Both laugh-out-loud funny and quietly moving, The New Canadian Curling Club is a new Canadian comedy with a heart as big as Canada itself!