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Farley Mowat.
Toronto, ON: McClelland & Stewart, 1989.
330pp., cloth, $24.95.
ISBN 0-7710-6689-9. CIP.

Subject Headings:
Mowat, Farley, 1921-
Newfoundland and Labrador-Social life and customs.
Newfoundland and Labrador-Description and travel.

Grades 10 and up / Ages 15 and up

Reviewed by Michael Freeman.

Volume 18 Number 1
1990 January

Farley Mowat draws from his own authoritative works on Newfoundland to create a fascinating eulogy for traditional life on the Rock. He captures the character of the seafolk, whose chosen life-style remained the same from one generation to the next until they were pushed unwillingly into the twentieth century by the political machinations of Joey Smallwood. From the unification with Canada in 1949 to the present, the government has continued purposefully to dislodge the people from their outport homes and seagoing livelihoods into larger mining and industrial communities, systematically destroying both the natural and human environment in the name of progress.

Mowat brings both Newfoundland's past and present to life, taking the reader through the Norse sagas, the first European visits, and the establishment of permanent settlements based on cod fishing and seal hunting. Interspersed with this historical account are Mowat's own experiences while living on the south coast of Newfoundland for several years. With seeming ease he distils the essence of these kind, hardworking, insular people and simultaneously arouses the reader's anger at the destructive excesses wrought by the present technological age.

Highly Recommended.

Michael Freeman, Bathurst Heights Secondary School, North York, ON.
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