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Harrison. Julia D.

Vancouver, Douglas & McIntyre, c1985. 160pp, paper, $24.95, ISBN 0-88894-421-7. CIP

Grades 12 and up
Reviewed by Lillian M. Turner

Volume 13 Number 5
1985 September

The author, an anthropologist and curator of ethnology at the deservedly prestigious Glenbow Museum in Calgary has mounted a 1985 exhibition entitled Métis, which will be touring some western cities and Montreal in the East. The years spent in research prompted the writing of this history.

The story of the Métis, "the children of the fur trade," is told from its beginning, through the struggles to maintain a sense of identity and culture, to the series of Constitutional Conferences in the 1980s and the hope that the question of Métis aboriginal rights will eventually be settled.

This account of the historical and social life of the Métis is enhanced by the excellent quality of the numerous reproductions of paintings, photographs, and crafts from various collections in the Glenbow Museum. The section entitled "An Independent Style: Early Métis Clothing" consists of only four pages of photographs so vividly portrayed that the two pages of explanations are almost superfluous. The endpapers depict routes and trails in the days of the fur trade from the St. Lawrence River to its western and northern boundaries, a photograph of Louis Riel in 1884, and another map showing "the rebellions and the disperson of the Métis."

Five pages of notes, a three-page bibliography, and a cross-referenced index will add to its usefulness for the serious student researching Métis history. This colourful and attractive book is extremely well bound and highly recommended for purchase.

Lillian M. Turner, York Memorial C.I., Toronto, Ont.
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