Social Justice Stories

building compassion, tolerance, and responsible citizenship through social justice narratives

Great Writers from our First Nations

By Kim Sigafus and Lyle Ernst

A celebration of ten writers who have challenged stereotypes, told history from a perspective often silenced, and entertained millions of readers.

Included is author Louise Erdrich, whose novel Love Medicine was the first in an award-winning series about the lives of several generations of Ojibwa families. Sherman Alexie, author of the semi-autobiographical The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, went on to win the National Book Award. Tomson Highway broke new ground with his play The Rez Sisters. Joseph Boyden based his novel Three Day Road in part on his grandfather’s experience fighting in the First World War. N. Scott Momaday re-wrote the history of the American West with his book House Made of Dawn. Nicola Campbell drew on her family’s experience of residential schools to write the children’s books Shi-shi-etko and Shin-chi’s Canoe. Also included are Marilyn Dumont (A Really Good Brown Girl), Tim Tingle (Walking the Choctaw Road), Joseph Bruchac (Buffalo Song), and Maria Campbell (Half-breed).

The full list of writers profiled:

• Sherman Alexie (Spokane/Coeur d’Alene, Washington) - The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

• Louise Erdrich (Ojibwa, North Dakota) - Love Medicine (the Argus Series)

• Joseph Boyden (Cree/Métis, Ontario) - Three Day Road

• N. Scott Momaday (Kiowa/Cherokee, Oklahoma) - House Made of Dawn

• Marilyn Dumont (Cree/Métis, Alberta) - A Really Good Brown Girl

• Tomson Highway (Cree, Manitoba) - The Rez Sisters

• Joseph Bruchac (Abenaki, New York State) - Buffalo Song

• Maria Campbell (Métis, Saskatchewan) - Halfbreed

• Nicola Campbell (Interior Salish/Metis, Alberta) - Shin-chi’s Canoe

• Tim Tingle (Choctaw, Texas) - Walking the Choctaw Road