Two B.C. aboriginal leaders have won the Canadian Historical Association's annual book award.
Arthur Manuel and Grand Chief Ronald Derrickson, coauthors of Unsettling Canada: A National Wake-Up Call, won the CHA's Canadian Aboriginal History Prize in the book category at the organization's annual meeting tonight (May 31) at the University of Calgary.
According to the CHA website, the book prize "is awarded to the English or French language scholarly books...concerning the history of Aboriginal peoples whose territory overlaps with that of the current Canadian state, and/or books concerning Aboriginal people whose history involves significant interaction with institutions—state, ecclesiastic, corporate, or other—that are closely associated with what would become Canada."
In a news release, Manuel—a veteran First Nations activist and former chief of the Secwepemc Nation who attended three residential schools in B.C.—said that he was "very encouraged by the degree that non-indigenous peoples are recognizing that we need to have a fundamental change in this country, and this award is another indication of that". Manuel is the son of well-known B.C. indigenous political leader George Manuel.
Derrickson—a grand chief of the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs and six times elected chief of the Westbank First Nation near Kelowna—said in the release: "This book has been reaching indigenous peoples and Canadians from many backgrounds because it looks at not only where we are today but it offers a look ahead at where we can be in the future."
Naomi Klein provided a foreward for the book, published in April 2015 by Between the Lines.