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What I'm reading > What I'm reading: Two Old Women

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message 1: by Sean (new)

Sean (seanl42) | 9 comments Mod
I have been reading this book on my breaks, so it is a bit choppy. I'm really enjoying it, and it has gotten rave reviews from my co-workers.

message 2: by Sean (new)

Sean (seanl42) | 9 comments Mod
This book is a novelization of a Athabascan Indian legend.

I have had several friends who romanticize or "spiritualize" Native Americans (and other, non-European peoples) to the point of making them unhuman. I once had a friend who told me about how the virtuous arctic peoples would deal with food shortages in Winter. The eldest would stay behind so they would not be a burden to the rest of the people. This was done, in her telling, voluntarily and with great serenity. I could almost see their halos as she told the tale. BUT, the little voice in my head yelled "BS!" Sure, it might well have happened that way sometimes, but I know human beings (despite being of European descent, I am not totally unfamiliar with the human race.) Humans want to live! Humans abandon other humans and feel like crap for it. Humans sometimes are jerks.

This book shows the tribe abandoning these two old women, and it is not pretty at all. We are allowed to witness slow murder. It feels real. Not romanticized at all, this story is an authentic picture of humans in extremis.

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