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Prairie Fire :The 1885 North-West Rebellion
To many Canadians, the North-West Rebellion of 1885 is a dramatic, isolated incident, the story of Riel, the doomed hero. Prairie Fire tells the larger story: of Metis who wanted the boundar~es of their farms respected by Ottawa; of Natives whose land had been sold by the government, and starved as the government broke its promises; of frightened settlers caught between th ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published September 10th 1994 by Random House
(first published 1994)
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Seems comprehensive and detailed. For the most part it presents a balanced picture of the events and the participants. The author strives to give context but doesn't connect the dots completely leaving out a critical perspective on the way economic logic at the heart of Canada's western expansion. Leaving capitalism out of the equation presents the resistance as an episode out of connection with current struggles for First Nation, Metis, and rank and file settlers in the Prairies. Still, its har ...more
The authors claim this is the definitive book on the Metis rebellion and while that seems to be a huge claim to make this book does take a deep look into the government, Metis, First Nations and prairie settlers points of view and actions. A must read for anyone interested in western Canada's history.
They do great job trying to present an even handed retelling. The problem is the conclusion is not much of anything. They could use their research to really examine what this meant for Canada, the Metis, the Indians, and so on but they don't. It's the shortest part of the book and I wonder why. A lost opportunity, me thinks.