Ottawa's Festival of Ideas Since 1997
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Pre-Recorded Event
2:00pm

Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies

with Leanne Betasamosake Simpson
Hosted by Karen McBride

Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies

with Leanne Betasamosake Simpson
Hosted by Karen McBride
20
Sunday
Sep
2:00pm
Please RSVP for this
Free event
Leanne Betasomosake Simpson

Acclaimed Algonquin Anishinaabe novelist Karen McBride talks with Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, the Award-winning Nishnaabeg storyteller and writer. Her latest book, Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies, is a bold reimagination of the novel, one that combines narrative and poetic fragments through a careful and fierce reclamation of Anishinaabe aesthetics.

 

Mashkawaji (they/them) lies frozen in the ice, remembering a long-ago time of hopeless connection and now finding freedom and solace in isolated suspension. They introduce us to the seven main characters: Akiwenzii, the old man who represents the narrator’s will; Ninaatig, the maple tree who represents their lungs; Mindimooyenh, the old woman who represents their conscience; Sabe, the giant who represents their marrow; Adik, the caribou who represents their nervous system; Asin, the human who represents their eyes and ears; and Lucy, the human who represents their brain. Each attempts to commune with the unnatural urban-settler world, a world of SpongeBob Band-Aids, Ziploc baggies, Fjällräven Kånken backpacks, and coffee mugs emblazoned with institutional logos. And each searches out the natural world, only to discover those pockets that still exist are owned, contained, counted, and consumed. Cut off from nature, the characters are cut off from their natural selves.

 

Noopiming is Anishinaabemowin for “in the bush,” and the title is a response to English Canadian settler and author Susanna Moodie’s 1852 memoir Roughing It in the Bush. To read Simpson’s work is an act of decolonization, degentrification, and willful resistance to the perpetuation and dissemination of centuries-old colonial myth-making. It is a lived experience. It is a breaking open of the self to a world alive with people, animals, ancestors, and spirits, who are all busy with the daily labours of healing—healing not only themselves, but their individual pieces of the network, of the web that connects them all together. Enter and be changed.

 

A limited number of signed books are available from our friends at Perfect Books.

 

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