A is for Aboriginal is the first publication in the First Nations Reader Series. Each letter explores a name, a place or facet of Aboriginal history and culture. The content is based on the rich cultural and artistic traditions of Aboriginal people and once completed there will be a free distribution to urban and rural early childhood educational ECD programs. Donated funds will go to fund a free distribution.
A is for Aboriginal
By Joseph MacLean
Illustrated by Brendan Heard
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
- George Santayana (1863-1952)
The reader will discover some interesting baits of history and tradition that are not widely known. Many, for example, do not know that Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin (two of the American Founding Fathers) both attribute the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy, one of the world’s oldest democracies, as the inspiration for the American Constitution. Or, that the origin of ‘Red Indian’ is not because of skin colour, but from the ochre (iron oxide) used by the now extinct Beothuk to colour their skin red – red skin.
At the bottom of each letter there is a list of Indiginous peoples that begin with that letter. The idea is that the names can be recited as a sort of poem of remembrance. This book celebrates Aboriginal Heritage and Culture and is beautifully illustrated by Brendan Heard, a Canadian artist who works in oil paint and digital medium.