Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

CWILA's call to action in support of Chief Theresa Spence and Idle No More

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I've spent the past while embroiled in holiday parties and preparations and shuttling from here to there and wrapping of presents and dealing with the failures of my body. Meanwhile, beyond the confines of my sickbed, Chief Theresa Spence has been on hunger strike since December 11, and the Idle No More movement has been shaking the country from coast to coast.

I received an email from Canadian Women in the Literary Arts (CWILA) yesterday urging me to write letters in support of Chief Spence and the Idle No More movement. From that call:

CWILA began as a collective of writers who believe that words have power, and who support the struggle for gender equity in Canada’s literary landscape, but that fight is one small component of a much larger struggle for justice in this country. We believe, as writers and feminists, that we have a responsibility to stand in solidarity with indigenous peoples who are fighting for their rights, environmental protection and for democracy in general. By writing letters in support of Chief Spence, we honour the brave indigenous women who have asked for our support. Let’s not, in this moment, lose hope in the power of words.

Read the full call to action here. (And perhaps consider joining CWILA if you haven't already.)

I hesitiate to editorialize here on the Idle No More movement, as I am a guest of Open Book Toronto, and I'm not sure this the appropriate place to present my views on the Harper government or Aboriginal Rights. I do hope any readers who come across this post will spend some time examining the issues surrounding the movement, and if they feel moved to action - that they act.


The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

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Sachiko Murakami

Sachiko Murakami is the author of the poetry collections The Invisibility Exhibit (Talonbooks, 2008), a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award, and Rebuild (Talonbooks, 2011). She lives in Toronto.

Go to Sachiko Murakami’s Author Page