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Clearing the Plains: Disease, Politics of Starvation, and the Loss of Aboriginal Life Hardcover – May 13 2013


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Clearing the Plains: Disease, Politics of Starvation, and the Loss of Aboriginal Life + The Orenda + The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 340 pages
  • Publisher: University of Regina Press (May 13 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0889772967
  • ISBN-13: 978-0889772960
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 0.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 680 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #24,925 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

"Required reading for all Canadians." -Candace Savage, author of A Geography of Blood "[A] great work of history...James' Daschuk's Clearing the Plains is colossal. This is excavation of an authentically Canadian past from under layers of colonial myth, performed with a scalpel, and illuminated by searing prose." -Globe and Mail "Clearing the Plains is a tour de force that dismantles and destroys the view that Canada has a special claim to humanity in its treatment of indigenous peoples. Daschuk shows how infectious diseases and state-supported starvation combined to create a creeping, relentless catastrophe that persists to the present day. The prose is gripping, the analysis is incisive, and the narrative is so chilling that it leaves its reader stunned and disturbed. For days after reading it, I was unable to shake a profound sense of sorrow. This is fearless, evidence-driven history at its finest." -Elizabeth A. Fenn, author of Pox Americana "[C]learly written, deepy researched, and properly contextualized history...Essential reading for everyone interested in the history of indigenous North America." -J.R. McNeil, author of Mosquito Empires"

From the Back Cover

"In arresting, but harrowing, prose, James Daschuk examines the roles that Old World diseases, climate, and, most disturbingly, Canadian politics?the politics of ethnocide?played in the deaths and subjugation of thousands of aboriginal people in the realization of Sir John A. Macdonald?s ?National Dream.? It was a dream that came at great expense: the present disparity in health and economic well-being between First Nations and non-Native populations, and the lingering racism and misunderstanding that permeates the national consciousness to this day. ?Clearing the Plains is a tour de force that dismantles and destroys the view that Canada has a special claim to humanity in its treatment of indigenous peoples. Daschuk shows how infectious disease and state-supported starvation combined to create a creeping, relentless catastrophe that persists to the present day. The prose is gripping, the analysis is incisive, and the narrative is so chilling that it leaves its reader stunned and disturbed. For days after reading it, I was unable to shake a profound sense of sorrow. This is fearless, evidence-driven history at its finest.? Elizabeth A. Fenn, author of Pox Americana ?Required reading for all Canadians.? Candace Savage, author of A Geography of Blood " --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Most helpful customer reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Christina M Passmore on March 2 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An in depth look at the history between the First Nations people and the European settlers of Canada. This book of factual accounts creates a path of understanding as to how we came to be where we are today. It is heart wrenching in some places, but the window of clarity it opens in one's conscience makes it a must read for all of us.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Robyn Lawson on March 27 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A clear, unsparing and gutting retelling of how the Indigenous in Canada were driven to reserves and suffered under the Indian Act of 1876 - which is still in force today. This should be required reading for every school in the country. It is reprehensible that the majority of its citizens remain unaware of their own country's history.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By judith H. Brooks on June 23 2014
Format: Hardcover
Clearing the Plains is a worthwhile read but not for the faint-hearted. Daschuk presents an accurate picture of the suffering and death that our Native people experienced at the hands of European powers. Diseases, especially TB, became epidemic among a nation of people who, until the arrival of the Europeans, were found to be among the tallest and healthiest people in the world. Over time the bison became extinct, food was rationed by government agents, and Native people were now suffering from severe malnutrition. It's not surprising their health declined over time.
Learning about a people's past helps us to better understand their role in society today.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An excellent history of how colonialism, in pursuit of greed, bullied, deceived, starved, imprisoned and stole the identity of
a healthy proud society of our First Nations people. A must read for every white person
to appreciate and empathize with the challenges our First Nations had to deal with in the coming of the white
man. And i did feel shame for what my ancestors did. I could not put it down once I started reading it. The time has come to
make amends.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ron Tomyn on Feb. 14 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like it says on the back cover, A must read for all Canadians! Gives you a better understanding of what our First Nations are dealing with.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I think all Canadian children should know this history. It is an in site into how and why things were done in our past and how they are and why we are were we are today.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By oliver on Aug. 16 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
While the book is quite technical, and obviously a thesis, i have thoroughly appreciated this book. Very well researched book.
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