Michael Gnarowski co-edited The Making of Modern Poetry in Canada, compiled The Concise Bibliography of English Canadian Literature, and edited the Critical Views on Canadian Writers series for McGraw-Hill Ryerson. Gnarowski is professor emeritus at Carleton University in Ottawa.
I Dream of Yesterday and Tomorrow
This volume of legends, excerpts from the written historical record, essays, photographs, interviews, and reminisces, is a unique assemblage of materials that present the lives of the James Bay Cree from the early times of the spoken word as legend to the astounding contemporaneity of their present-day dot.com world.
Touching on the various communities, from those washed by the waters of James Bay to the inland settlements of a distinct people who call themselves Eeyou, this collection of words and images is built around the ideas of past-value origins, present-day adaptation to contemporary values and needs, and future dreams and challenges. The true scope of this volume is lodged in the successful connections it makes with all aspects of Cree life.
This is a record that not only includes first contact, but is strong in its emphasis on the evolving patterns and present-day institutions that co-function effectively with traditional ways. There is everything here from respected oldsters’ telling of the way life was lived, to an account of the great battles with Hydro Quebec, to the flooding of hunting grounds, to the forward-looking triumph of the creation of the Douglas Cardinal-designed community and cultural centre of Oujé Bougoumou.