Peepeekisis âtayôhkêwina: Sacred Stories of Peepeekisis Cree Nation is coming out this week (in English and Plains Cree) via Your Nickel’s Worth Press. This is another exciting reward for those working hard to reclaim and revitalize the Cree language.
A couple of weeks ago, I was treated to a pre-release show-and-tell via Zoom (thanks to Solomon Ratt and Jesse Archibald-Barber). I learned that the late Eleanor Brass (who passed away in 1992), had published a collection of stories from Peepeekisis in 1979, under the title, Medicine Boy And Other Cree Tales. In that book, the stories were presented entirely in English, with original artwork by Henry Nanooch.
Forty-some years later, thanks to remarkable support and vision from Brass’s surviving family, this brand new book honours Eleanor Brass’s memory by bringing fresh life to her stories. At the same time, it also brings fresh life to the Cree language, by reclaiming the stories in Plains Cree through the careful translation work of fully fluent speakers, Inez Deiter (a close relation of Brass herself), Darryl Chamakese, and Solomon Ratt. The book is laid out with English and Cree side by side, and is joyfully illustrated by Aleigha Agecoutay (who brings yet another generation of Peepeekisis Cree Nation into the project).
You can also download this PDF that includes full ordering details: this brochure is ideal for passing on to libraries, schools or other corporate purchasers (to give them a helpful nudge). Bulk or educational purchasers should email the publisher directly: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
I can’t wait to see this one in real life!