Category Archives: language

Canadian Women: Now + Then

Written by: Elizabeth MacLeod

Illustrated by: Maïa Faddoul

For ages: 8 years and up

Language: English

Topics Covered: History, Biography, Canadian Women, Indigenous Voices, First Nations, Women in STEM, Women in Sports, Feminism, Journalism. 

Summary: 

Happy International Women’s Day! Today is a fantastic day to honor those past and present who have changed the world, and Canadian Women: Now + Then is a sensational book that we want to celebrate on this day.

I absolutely love how this book pairs up women from the past and present day who changed the face of history.  Going alphabetically, the reader learns about activists, astronauts, culture keepers, poets, and SO MANY more badass women that everyone needs to know about, especially outside of Canada.  We live in a very Eurocentric world, and particularly American culture and politics has pervaded  much of the media and education system.  This sounds fake, but I have had Canadian friends have to explain to Americans that they celebrate Black History Month in Canada but not MLK Jr. Day.  These assumptions are caused by elitism and ignorance, and the best way to combat these harmful ways of living is through education.  

Dang, I’m glad this book exists.  The women profiled in Canadian Women are diverse and from all walks of life, with a solid amount of First Nations women included as well such as dancer Santee Smith (Tekaronhiáhkhwa) and Shanawdithit, who preserved her Beothuk culture the best she could under the crushing force of European colonialist invasion. It’s clear that the creators of the book put First Nations and women of color at the forefront, and I am so pleased with that choice!

In the back are smaller profiles of even more inspiring Canadian women, such as one of our favorite artists Kenojuak Ashevak!  Jam-packed with historical information and adorable illustrations, this book will be sitting on our bookshelf for ages to come.

This book was sent to us by Kids Can Press, but all opinions are our own!

About the Author & the Illustrator:

elizabeth_macleodElizabeth MacLeod became a writer at a young age. When she and her older brothers were supposed to be doing homework, instead they were sliding crazy drawings and silly stories under one another’s bedroom doors. Elizabeth couldn’t draw (unfortunately, she still can’t), so she wrote wild tales about mad scientists and creatures from alien planets. Not a lot of homework got done!

While at the University of Toronto, Elizabeth didn’t take a single writing course. Instead, she studied science, graduating with an honors degree in biology and botany. That science training came in handy when she started in children’s publishing as the managing editor at OWL Magazine. Then she became an editor and writer at Kids Can Press, where she’s written on subjects ranging from Albert Einstein and horses to Mount Everest and Lucy Maud Montgomery.

Now Elizabeth is a very nosy freelance writer who loves finding out why people do the things they do, so she especially liked writing the books in the “Snapshots: Images of People and Places in History” series (for kids ages 8 to 12) and the “Inspiring Lives” series (for kids ages 6 to 8).

A proud Canadian, Elizabeth loves writing about people who live in Canada and have changed the country — and sometimes the world. As a female writer, she thinks it’s vital that kids know about the courageous women who have improved our lives, so she’s really pleased to share her book Canadian Women Now + Then with readers. Elizabeth wrote about a different kind of brave Canadian in her book Bunny the Brave War Horse, the incredible true story about a horse from Toronto, Ontario, who served with amazing courage in World War I.

Elizabeth and her husband live in Toronto, where their cat, Cosimo, is usually sprawled across her desk!

ma_a_faddoulMaïa Faddoul was born in Montreal, Quebec, to an Argentine mother and a Lebanese father. Her maternal grandfather was a theme park illustrator, and she’d always been interested in drawings and imagery of any kind. Having studied both illustration and design at Dawson College and UQAM, she now works as a multidisciplinary illustrator and designer, creating empowering, bright and colorful imagery, often with an important message.

Her upbringing, heavily rooted in core intersectional feminist values, has led her to work on many projects centered on women and the LGBTQ+ community, in the hopes of using her talent and creativity to help bring more visibility and power to young and misrepresented groups across the globe. This aspect of her work has allowed her to collaborate on a variety of great projects with clients such as Teen Vogue, Showtime, Time’s Up, the National Film Board of Canada and many more.

Maïa still lives in Montreal and works from her colorful and bright downtown studio which she shares with her partner and fellow illustrator. Visit her website here!

IntersectionAllies: we make room for all

750w

Written by: Chelsea Johnson, LaToya Council, Carolyn Choi

Illustrated by: Ashley Seil Smith

For ages: 6 years and up

Language: English

Topics Covered: Intersectionality (as you may have already guessed), diversity, solidarity, activism, identity, activism, disability, protest.

Summary: 

This book is incredible! Written in an accessible way, the reader is introduced to a group of friends that have unique intersections of identity without it feeling like they were manifested to teach us a lesson about diversity.  There is not only a forward by Kimberlé Crenshaw herself (who coined the term ‘intersectionality’) but a letter to grownups about how to introduce concepts to kids like empathy.  Having this book address presumably the adult reader of the book prepares them for how to talk in-depth about the topics within the book, and frame them in a helpful way for the younger readers/listeners.  The letter emphasizes the importance of teaching solidarity and intersectionality to children from a young age, which is something we couldn’t agree more with.

When reading the story, we meet characters like Allie, the basketball fiend who also uses a wheelchair, and Kate who is non-binary and likes to wear a cape.  Adilah is an avid dancer and hijabi, taking ballet classes with some of her friends.  Nia participates in the Black Lives Matter movement, and the reader learns about protesting.  The kids featured in the book are dynamic and friendly, with bilingual identities reflected as well.

In the back are more resources and a vocabulary guide that mentions specific page numbers, giving valuable and robust information for further discussion.  It is refreshing to have such care taken, thoroughly underscoring the learning that this book provides for all who open its covers.  We cannot say enough good things about it, this book should have a space on every bookshelf and it’s praise shouted from the rooftops.

About the Authors & the Illustrator In their Own Words:

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Dr. Chelsea Johnson

“As a kid, I was often the only Black girl in my classrooms. Growing up as an “outsider within” my mostly white schools piqued my interest in how race, class, and gender shape social life. I gained the tools to understand my experiences as an undergraduate at Spelman College, an Historically Black College for women in Atlanta, Georgia.  It was at Spelman that I became a feminist. I went on to earn a PhD in sociology at the University of Southern California. My dissertation explored how fashion, politics, and culture relate. I traveled around the world, interviewing women with African roots in South Africa, Brazil, The Netherlands, France, Spain, and the United States about their lives. I now use research to help companies design products with underrepresented groups in mind. When I’m not researching or writing, I enjoy watercolor painting, reading fiction, and eating my way through new cities.”

 

LaToya Council

photo_1056258“I was raised in a single-parent mother-headed home. I would often stare at my mother in awe of her super-shero abilities to manage so many family demands while holding multiple jobs to make ends meet. These memories inspired my vision for a more inclusive world and drove me toward studying sociology at Spelman College, where I first learned about the concept of intersectionality. After graduating from Spelman, I studied the inequalities in love and how race, gender, and class intersect to inform relationship experiences for my master’s at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. I am currently working on my dissertation at the University of Southern California, which examines time use and self-care among Black middle-class couples. Intersectionality and the power of love frame how I do allyship and research. When not researching, I enjoy practicing meditation, cooking, and hanging with my cat Mimi.”

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Carolyn Choi

The Los Angeles Riots were a defining moment in my childhood that shaped my identity as a person of color and brought me to feminism later in life. My interests in gender, culture, and immigration led me to study sociology and Korean literature at UCLA. After graduating from college, I began community-based organizing and advocacy work as an intern at Koreatown Immigrant Workers’ Alliance, a non-profit civil rights organization in Los Angeles. I earned my master’s degree at the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2009. A few years later, I began doctoral study in sociology at the University of Southern California. My research tackles issues around migrant labor, human trafficking, and international education and has taken me across the United States, South Korea, the Philippines, and Australia. In my spare time, I enjoy spreading greater awareness about the Korean arts through performing pansori, a form of traditional folk music.”

Ashley Seil-Smith

lighter“I grew up one of five girls (and a twin!) in Southern California and Texas. My conservative roots prompted questions about privilege and feminism, which led me to study cultural anthropology as an undergraduate, including ethnographic research on women’s health in South India. I eventually moved to New York City and helped launch The Period Store as a vehicle to educate women about all of their options for period management, while also earning my MFA from the School of Visual Arts. When I’m not drawing, painting, or print making, you can find me outside being active or caring for my menagerie of adopted senior animals with the help of my husband, Nate.”

I’m Gonna Push Through [released Feb. 18th]

Written by: Jasmyn Wright

Illustrated by: Shannon Wright

For ages: 4-8 years

Language: English

Topics Covered: Empowerment, Self-Confidence, Resiliency, Disability, Diverse Experiences, Growth Mindset.

Summary: 

This book is awesome!  I’m Gonna Push Through! delivers an empowering message for young people to step into their power and overcome anything in their path.  The book is based on a mantra that the author developed for her classroom, it embraces challenge head-on and encourages students to see themselves as masters of their own story.

This story is spectacular for so many reasons!  The illustrations are incredible and diverse, featuring many people I’ve never seen featured in a children’s book before.  Students that use mobility aids, a child using a white and red cane (signifying low or no vision), a girl with a prosthetic leg, as well as a child with vitiligo!  Reading through the book, the reader learns about how many famous adults (LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, Jillian Mercado, and Jamie Brewer and more) pushed through any potential roadblocks on their journey, and conquered.

In the back of the book is a lengthy author’s note about Jasmyn’s journey as a teacher and the phenomenon of her Push Through campaign that became known globally.  There is also information about most (not all, unfortunately) of the people mentioned that pushed on through and achieved greatness.  Overall, this is an amazing book that should be used in classrooms everywhere!  I don’t think our review can do justice to this storyline, I urge everyone to find a copy immediately and take in the beauty that is this book.

This book was sent to us by our friends at Simon & Schuster, but all opinions are our own!

About the Author & the Illustrator:

Jasmyn Wright, a globally recognized educator, was born in Philadelphia, PA, but grew up in Pennsauken, NJ. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Spelman College in 2009, and her Master of Education from Christian Brothers University in 2012. IN 2015, Jasmyn was awarded the Teachers for Global Classrooms Professional Development Fellowship, in which she spent one year taking a global educational course, and learning ways to bring the awareness of global education to her school community. The fellowship required her to create a global education unit plan, and spend three weeks in Manila, Philippines, sharing best practices with government officials, administrators, and educators. She spent her Spring 2009 semester studying abroad at the University of Legon in Accra, Ghana.

A Teach for America alumna and elementary teacher of 9 years, Jasmyn taught in under-served and disadvantaged communities. She’s very passionate about instilling self-awareness and life-skills in her students, and is best known for helping them develop confidence, grit and resilience to overcome adversities, accomplish goals, and maximize their potential.

Jasmyn brought creativity and innovation in her classroom by creating affirmations, programs, and global learning projects that left her students feeling empowered and excited to learn. By fostering growth mindset, she encouraged them to be strong and limitless. Her inspiring and “out of the box” teaching approach allowed her to build authentic, healthy relationships with each of her students, and create a strong classroom culture.

November 2016, Jasmyn uploaded a video to her Facebook page, leading an original call and response mantra called #PushThrough with her then third grade students. This mantra instantly became a social media sensation, reaching over 3.7 million views within one week. Since then, her classroom style of teaching has been recognized and featured in The Huffington PostThe Today ShowBuzzfeed News, NPR News, Fox, NBC, etc. Recently, Jasmyn and her class had the opportunity to film and be a part of a 2017 GAP Kids back to school commercial and campaign, using a shortened version of her infamous classroom mantra, ‘Push Through’. The commercial was also coupled with a 5 minute mini documentary. Her ‘Push Through’ mantra is now permeating throughout classrooms and communities all over the world, and has been translated into 4 languages.

Jasmyn is a global educator and professes that the world is now her classroom. In addition to traveling and leading various inspirational keynotes, youth empowerment workshops, and teacher professional developments across the globe, she also serves as an educational consultant. Jasmyn travels to multiple countries and partners with organizations, leading, facilitating, and organizing teacher training programs. Sharing her best practices and innovative and sincere teaching methods, she’s impacting and transforming educational communities around the world.

Her goal with The Push Through Organization is to continue to use her voice and gift to spread empowerment, speak up and advocate for what society labels as broken, remind people their they were birthed with a purpose and limitless, and positively impact change around the world. For more on Ms. Jasmyn Wright, please visit her website at: http://www.jasmynwrightglobal.weebly.com

Photo by Sarah Schultz Taylor

Shannon Wright is an illustrator and cartoonist based out of Richmond, Virginia. Some of her clients include The Guardian, TIME Magazine, NY Times, Mother Jones, NPR, Google and Scholastic. Her first picture book, My Mommy Medicine, is out on shelves.

Her work tends to explore social issues like race and gender through a slice-of-life lens. She makes personal and original stories invoking nostalgia rooted from her own childhood and life around her. Represented by Writers House. For book inquiries contact Hannah Mann.

Care Giver Fatigue

Shubh Raatri Dost (Good Night Friend)

Written & Illustrated by: Nidhi Chanani

For ages: Infant & up, it’s a board book!

Language: Hindi, Romanized Hindi, English

Topics Covered: Animals, Family, Language, Bilingual Books, Global Community, POC-Centric Narratives. 

Summary: 

This trilingual book is a super cute take on a “Goodnight Moon”-esque night ritual of two siblings, as they say goodnight to different critters on their farm.  We like this book much better than the original Goodnight Moon!  The siblings bring things around to the animals on their farm as they wish them a goodnight.  Simple, adorable, and lovely illustrations from Nidhi Chanani.

This book was sent to us by Bharat Babies for consideration in the Best Books of 2019 List put on by the Read With River book club, but all opinions are our own!

About the Author & Illustrator:

nidhiNidhi Chanani is a freelance illustrator, cartoonist and writer. After completing her undergrad literature degree at the University of California at Santa Cruz, Nidhi pursued a career in non-profits. The desire to draw kept pulling her away and in 2008 she enrolled in art school (only to drop out a year later). In 2009 she began completing one illustration every day of the week. She called this Every Day Love and developed her narrative style and voice with three years of daily practice. Thus began her art career and business.

Nidhi was born in Calcutta and raised in suburban southern California. She creates because it makes her happy – with the hope that it can make others happy, too. In April of 2012 she was honored by the Obama Administration as a Champion of Change.

Her debut graphic novel, Pashmina, was released by First Second Books in fall 2017. It received starred reviews in the School Library JournalPublisher’s Weekly, and was reviewed in the New York Times. In March of 2019, the film adaptation of Pashmina with Netflix was announced. Gurinder Chadha is set to direct.

In 2018, Jasmine’s New Pet, which she wrote, drew and colored released through Dark Horse Comics. Her first bilingual board book, Shubh Raatri Dost/Good Night Friend released in 2019 through Bharat Babies. Her debut picture book, written by Bea Birdsong, I will be fierce, released in April 2019.

She is currently working on her second original graphic novel, Jukebox, with her husband Nick Giordano which is slated for 2021 release. She is an instructor in the Master of Fine Arts, Comics program at the California College of Arts.

Her media appearances include CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 and BBC Radio. Her work has been featured on the Huffington Post, the Women’s March, My Modern Met, Bored Panda and India Times. Nidhi has worked with Disney, ABC, Airbnb, Sony, Microsoft, State Farm Insurance and a variety of other clients. Her non-fiction comics have appeared in the Nib. Everyday Love Art products are sold in retail shops across the country, including the San Francisco International Airport, Books Inc., and Therapy stores.

Nidhi draws and dreams every day with her husband, daughter and their attention starved cat in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Sound Off Saturday Featuring: Mama Tortuga!

Happy Saturday!  We are thrilled to have been able to connect this week with Johana, also known as Mama Tortuga!  She is a powerhouse of bilingual and herbal activism and knowledge, with a flair for business.  Johana is a hustler and has tons of fantastic projects that she’s currently working on.  We hope you enjoy learning about them as much as we did!
The Tiny Activist: Introduce yourself/your organization!f70d4b_5e94206b839e4548ac290c241396f086~mv2_d_1836_3264_s_2

Mama Tortuga: Hello, hola!! I am Johana usually called Mama Tortuga. I have created a bilingual website called www.mamatortuga.org to support and provide resources to families around the world, that want to raise free, eco-conscious, multilingual, global citizens. Our perspective is multicultural. We love to create community and to support communities that are working to create a better and improved world!!! I have a very eclectic point of view, from music and arts, to activism, to freedom, our family is here to support this and amplify those voices that need to be amplified!!!

TTA: What are you passionate about?

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Johana and her family- Photo Credit: @R Dot Photography

 

MT: Very passionate about a wholesome approach to live!! From intersectional feminism, mindful parenting, sustainability, arts, and love!!! I am a student of life!! I am also a lover of nature and work alongside my family in our small backyard garden.

TTA: Tell us about a project you’re currently working on!

 

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“Parenting is a spiritual practice. Social Activism is a spiritual practice”

MT: Right now I am working on creating ways to support myself, an immigrant Latina mother, and support other women in my community in learning and healing. Always looking for ways I can generate funds and spaces for us to grow!! Locally, I am offering Spanish and English social classes in the area of West Palm Beach, Fl. I am also on a local Spanish radio, where I support ancestral knowledge on herbals and multicultural traditions. Online, I am offering platforms to support resources for global and conscious families. Also, I am documenting much of my adventures, because I believe our voices are important, even if my English is not perfect!! Always showing solidarity with oppressed groups and searching for a different mindset for our world!!! Right now working on a class to be offered at the Florida Herbal Conference of next year in Spanish!!!

 

TTA: How can people support you on your journey?

 

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“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need”

MT: Thanks for asking this!! We offer a line of wonderful and original Mama Tortuga T-shirts on all sizes for you $21 for sizes S, M, L and $18 for children, includes shipping, we also offer custom orders for bigger sizes or special merchandise. Also, I would love to be offered jobs on translation, multicultural consultant and talks, that are paid. I had been doing a lot of these jobs in the past decade. Sadly, many times, we are not being acknowledged. Also, I would love to be part of online collabs and convos. It is about forming a supporting community!!!

 

TTA: What book was your favorite in 2019 so far?

MT: So hard to choose!! Going to mention some: The Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold Path for Healing Ourselves and Our World by Desmond Tutu and Mpho Andrea Tutu, The Holly Wild by Danielle Dulsky and Jambalaya by Louisa Teish

Screen Shot 2019-07-27 at 11.55.22 AMTTA: What are you looking forward to in the coming year?

MT: For my website to keep growing and new connections that make a reality the dreams I have about having a supportive community. That the passion that I have for justice and solidarity and healing can come to fruition in abundance of resources and love!!!f70d4b_6ed50d5703164302a09e00d41ac84851mv2.jpg

 

Stay Connected with Mama Tortuga!

Green, multicultural and mindful family

Spanish Conversational Groups 

Arctic Animals

Written & Illustrated by: Inhabit Media Inc., which is part of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association.

For Ages: Board book, infant and up.

Language: Inuksiutiit & English, also contains Inuksiutiit pronunciation in Roman alphabet.

Topics Covered: First Nations, Indigenous Voices, Literacy, Bilingualism, Numeracy, Culture & Traditions, Own Voices.

Summary: Like the counting book we reviewed before, this is a simple board book about arctic animals.  There is a beautiful melding of cultures, learning the First Nations terminology for the animals that they’ve always encountered.  Polar bears, ptarmigans, lemmings, and more!  The emphasis is put on the Indigenous languages, listing those first  before English.  The type is large and simple pictures accompany the rich linguistics within the books.  A photo of the animal is shown in its habitat and then again on the page with the words to reinforce learning.  Simple and short, but a great resource for anyone interested in animals or learning new languages!

Reflection Questions:

  • Do you live near any of these animals natural habitats?
  • If not, where might we be able to see them?
  • Do you know any other languages?
  • What about any members of your family?

Continuing the Conversation:

  • Pick your favorite animal and learn more about them.  Watch video clips, learn what they like to eat, and build a model of their homes!
  • Learn more about the First Nations tribal groups, and the ones that speak Inuksiutiit.  Do you think everyone is bilingual?
  • Lots of people around the world speak more than one language.  Which ones are most common, and do any of your family members speak those common languages?

About INHABIT MEDIA :

Scroll down for English translation!

Inhabit Media Inc. ᓯᕗᓪᓕᖅᐹᖑᓪᓗᓂ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᕆᓂᕐᒥᒃ ᓇᖕᒥᓂᕆᔭᐅᓪᓗᓂ ᑲᒻᐸᓂᐅᔪᖅ ᑲᓇᑕᐅᑉ ᐅᑭᐅᖅᑕᖅᑐᖓᓂ. ᑐᕌᒐᕆᔭᕗᑦ ᐃᑲᔪᕋᓱᒡᓗᒋᑦ ᑲᔪᓯᑎᒋᐊᕐᓗᒋᓪᓗ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᐅᔪᑦ ᐱᔪᓐᓇᕐᓂᐅᔪᓪᓗ ᐅᑭᐅᖅᑕᖅᑐᕐᒥᐅᓂᑦ, ᐃᑲᔪᖅᓯᕐᓗᑕᓗ ᖃᐅᔨᓇᓱᖕᓂᕐᒥᒃ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑐᐊᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᓄᓇᕗᒻᒥᐅᓪᓗ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᑐᖃᖏᓐᓂᒃ (ᓄᓇᕗᒻᒥᐅᑦ, ᑲᓇᑕᒥ ᐊᕕᒃᑐᖅᓯᒪᔪᑦ ᐅᐊᖕᓇᖅᐸᓯᖕᓂᖅᐹᖓᓃᑦᑐᖅ).  ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᑦ, ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑎᑦ, ᑎᑎᕋᐅᔭᖅᑎᓪᓗ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᑐᖃᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᐆᒻᒪᖅᑎᑎᓲᖑᕗᑦ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᖅᑎᓄᑦ ᑭᒃᑯᑐᐃᓐᓇᕐᓄᑦ ᐃᓕᓴᕐᓇᖅᑐᓂᒃ ᖃᐅᔨᒋᐅᖅᑕᐅᔪᓂᒡᓗ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᐱᖅᑯᓯᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᐃᓕᖅᑯᓯᖏᓐᓂᒡᓗ.

ᑎᒥᙳᖅᑎᑕᐅᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᕗᖅ 2006-ᖑᑎᓪᓗᒍ, Inhabit Media ᐱᒋᐊᖅᑎᑕᐅᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᕗᖅ ᓄᓇᕗᒻᒥᐅᑦ ᓄᑕᕋᖏᑦ ᑕᑯᖃᑦᑕᕆᐊᖃᕐᓂᖏᓐᓄᑦ ᐱᖅᑯᓯᕐᒥᓂᒃ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᖅᑕᒥᖕᓂ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᕐᕕᖕᓂ. ᐅᑭᐅᑦ ᖁᓕᙳᖅᐳᑦ ᐱᓕᕆᖃᑎᖃᖅᐸᒃᖢᑕ ᐃᓐᓇᕐᓂᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑐᐊᖅᑎᓂᒡᓗ ᑲᓇᑕᐅᑉ ᐅᑭᐅᖅᑕᖅᑐᖁᑎᓕᒫᖏᓐᓂ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᐸᓪᓕᐊᓪᓗᑕ ᐊᔾᔨᒌᙱᑦᑐᓂᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑐᐊᖁᑎᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᐳᐃᒍᖅᑕᐅᖁᓇᒋᑦ ᑭᖑᕚᕆᔭᐅᓂᐊᖅᑐᓄᑦ.

ᐊᒥᓱᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑐᐊᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᑕᕗᑦ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑕᐅᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᙱᑦᑐᑦ, ᐱᑕᖃᐃᓐᓇᐅᔭᖅᑑᒐᓗᐊᑦ ᑕᐃᒪᙵᓂᑦ ᑐᓴᖅᑕᐅᒑᖓᒥᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑕᐅᕙᒃᖢᑎᒃ  ᑭᖑᕚᕇᓄᑦ. ᐃᓚᖏᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅᑐᐊᑐᖄᓘᒐᓗᐊᖅᑎᓪᓗᒋᑦ, ᐱᓕᕆᖃᑎᖃᖅᐸᒃᐳᒍᑦ ᐃᓐᓇᕐᓂᒃ, ᐃᓄᖕᓂᒡᓗ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᐸᒃᑐᓂᒃ ᒫᓐᓇᕐᓂᓴᕐᓂᒃ, ᐊᒻᒪ ᑎᑎᕋᐅᔭᖅᑎᓂᒃ ᓇᑭᕈᓘᔭᖅ ᓯᓚᕐᔪᐊᕐᒥᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᑦᑎᓪᓗᑎᒃ ᑭᒃᑯᑐᐃᓐᓇᕐᓂᑦ ᐅᓪᓗᒥᐅᔪᖅ ᑐᑭᓯᔭᐅᔪᓐᓇᖅᑐᓂᒃ ᑲᓇᑕᒥᐅᓂᑦ ᐊᒥᐊᓕᑲᒥᐅᓂᓪᓗ. ᐅᖃᓕᒫᒐᓕᐊᕆᕙᒃᑕᕗᑦ ᑕᑯᖅᑯᔾᔨᑐᐃᓐᓇᕐᓗᑎᒃ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᐱᖅᑯᓯᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᐱᙱᓚᑦ; ᓇᓗᓇᐃᖅᓯᖕᒥᔪᑦ ᑲᔪᓯᑎᑦᑎᓂᕐᒥᒃ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᖃᐅᔨᒪᔭᑐᖃᖏᓐᓂᒡᓗ ᐊᓯᐅᔨᔭᐅᓇᔭᖅᑐᒃᓴᐅᔪᕕᓂᕐᓂᒃ, ᐅᖃᓕᒫᖅᑎᓂᑦ ᐱᐅᒋᔭᐅᓪᓗᑎᒃ, ᖁᕕᐊᒋᔭᐅᓪᓗᑎᒡᓗ ᐊᒻᒪ ᑐᓴᐅᒪᑎᑦᑎᓂᖃᖅᐸᒃᐳᑦ.

ᓯᕗᓪᓕᖅᐹᖑᓪᓗᑕ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᕆᓂᕐᒥᒃ ᑲᒻᐸᓂᐅᓪᓗᑕ ᓄᓇᕗᒻᒥ, ᖁᕕᐊᓱᒃᐳᒍᑦ ᐅᑭᐅᖅᑕᖅᑐᕐᒥᐅᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᓯᓚᑐᓂᖏᓐᓂᒡᓗ ᑕᑯᖅᑯᔨᔭᕆᐊᒃᓴᖅ ᓯᓚᕐᔪᐊᕐᒥᐅᓄᑦ!

 

Inhabit Media Inc. is the first Inuit-owned, independent publishing company in the Canadian Arctic. We aim to promote and preserve the stories, knowledge, and talent of the Arctic, while also supporting research in Inuit mythology and the traditional Inuit knowledge of Nunavummiut (residents of Nunavut, Canada’s northernmost territory). Our authors, storytellers, and artists bring traditional knowledge to life in a way that is accessible to readers both familiar and unfamiliar with Inuit culture and traditions.

Incorporated in 2006, Inhabit Media was born out of a need for Nunavut kids to see their culture accurately represented in the books they read in schools. We have spent the last ten years working with elders and storytellers from across the Canadian Arctic to ensure that the region’s unique Inuit oral history is recorded and not lost to future generations.

Many of the stories that we publish have never been written down before, having existed for centuries as tales passed orally from generation to generation. While many of these stories are ancient, we work closely with elders, contemporary Inuit writers, and illustrators the world over to present folktales and traditional stories in a format that will resonate with modern audiences across North America. Our books do not simply provide a glimpse into Inuit culture; they also represent the preservation of oral history and traditional knowledge that may otherwise have been lost, in a format that contemporary readers will find engaging, entertaining, and informative.

As the first independent publishing company in Nunavut, we are excited to bring Arctic stories and wisdom to the world!

 

Sound Off Saturday- Featuring: Tyler Vile!

Happy Saturday! There’s a heat wave hitting us here in New England, so unless we venture to go swimming in the river later (which is also one of our favorite places to watch the sunset with a cold drink!) we will be inside all day!  We are so stoked to feature Tyler this week, who is a dear friend of ours.

Lee and Tyler experienced the highs and lows of their late teens and early twenties together in the squalid co-cops of the University of Maryland and have been best buds ever since 2013!


The Tiny Activist: So we know who you are, but can you introduce yourself/your organization for our readers?

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Photo credit: Justin Tsucalas

Tyler Vile: Hi! My name is Tyler Vile and I’m a writer, performer, and organizer from Baltimore, Maryland! I’m a founding member of Hinenu: The Baltimore Justice Shtiebel, a radically inclusive synagogue. I write poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and I’m trying to get back into screenwriting and playwriting, and I’m learning to write scripts for comic books. Hinenu formed officially in 2017, and we often get asked what it means to be a radically inclusive synagogue as opposed to just inclusive. The best answer I can come up with is that we have disabled Jews, queer and trans Jews, Jews of color, and converts in our leadership, and we make our decisions entirely democratically. Many progressive synagogues will pay lip service to marginalized people’s needs and issues, but at Hinenu, we’re the ones making the decisions. We’re looking to the future right now with conversations about childcare, Hebrew school, and increasing learning opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds. We pray together, we celebrate together, we protest together. It’s incredible to have seen this grow from a rough idea to where it is right now.

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Hinenu Members protesting against Migrant Concentration Camps

TTA: What are you passionate about?

TV: I’m passionate about so many things! Writing, of course, but also ritual, justice, human connection. My passions are a big motivator in my life. As a disabled person, it’s literally physically difficult to get out of bed sometimes. Everyone has to find that balance, that sweet spot between passion and rest. I have to remind myself all the time that it’s okay not to do everything I’m passionate about at once. Fear of missing out can be hard, but as long as you’re confident in what you’re doing long term, you don’t need to be at every show, every protest, or every event. 

TTA: Tell us about a project you’re currently working on!

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Cover of Shprintze and the Golem, written by Tyler and illustrator Avi Roberts

TV: Glad you asked! Right now, I’m working on a poetic reinterpretation of Bereshit (Genesis), the first book of the Torah. There’s so much in there that I think we take for granted. One thing I’ve learned in working with these ancient characters is that people really don’t change over thousands of years. There’s still jealousy, anger, hatred, and struggle, but there’s also still joy, humor, compassion, and liberation. I’m also working on a collection of sci-fi short stories about disabled characters and adaptive technology. I’ve always been a huge sci-fi fan and thought that we as disabled people live the most sci-fi lives, but we’re barely represented in the genre. When we are, it’s either as the villain or there’s a deus ex machina that fixes disability all together. I want to look at the consequences of “fixing” disability, the relationships we have with adaptive technology, and how disabled people are going to survive the climate crises that are headed our way. 

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Art based on the slogan used by South African disability rights and youth activists. By Ricardo Levins Morales.

TTA: How can people support you on your journey?

TV: You can make a tax deductible donation to Hinenu here if you feel so moved. My personal Paypal and Venmo are always open if you’d like to donate to the work I’m doing. You can buy my first book, Never Coming Home. While monetary donations help, they aren’t everything. If you’d like to book me for a poetry reading, writing workshop, or panel appearance, my email is authortylervile@gmail.com. Other than that, be good to the people around you, support local artists and activists.

I think the world is going to be saved by small actions, small organizations, and ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Think globally, act locally. Leave the world a little better than when you came in. That way, we can all support each other. 

TTA: What book was your favorite in 2019 so far?

 

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Cover of Making Spaces Safer by Shauna Potter

TV: It has to be Making Spaces Safer by my friend Shawna Potter. Shawna’s in a band called War on Women and is using her platform to make sure that public spaces are free from harassment and that everyone is afforded respect, dignity, and consent. I was a beta reader for that book and in offering feedback, I was blown away by how smoothly and directly she delivers some very necessary truths about the way we treat each other. I love the way she weaves other people’s narratives into the points she makes and invites readers to learn from what can go right as much as what can go wrong. 

TTA: What are you looking forward to in the coming year?

TV: The Jewish New Year is right around the corner! September will be here faster than you think. It’s not just about celebration, although that’s a big part of it, it’s a whole season of self-reflection, forgiveness, and accountability. What I love about it is that it acknowledges that hardship and joy are equally likely and that even when we’ve made mistakes and missed the mark, we’re still worth it and can grow and change. So, I’m looking forward to growing, learning, working on my book and all the things I don’t even know I’m going to love yet!

Thanks so much for having me, I love you guys and I can’t wait until the next time we see each other! 

Stay connected with Tyler!  


Tyler-Vile_eDonate to Tyler’s Paypal and Venmo

to support her work!


Check out Hinenu, and

make a tax deductible donation

to the organization here!


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Read Tyler’s first book,

Never Coming Home.


 

To book Tyler for a poetry reading, writing workshop, or panel appearance,

email her at: authortylervile@gmail.com