(Free Epub) ⛏ The Temptations of Big Bear (New Canadian Library) ⚝ eBook or E-pub free
Allan Bevan of Dalhousie University notes in his introduction to the edition that I read that Rudy Wiebe uses a great number of narrative techniques and variations in prose styles throughout the novel p xiii Moreover, the book is heavily populated with many characters making only brief appearances p xiv In other words, The Temptations of Big Bear is difficult to read In Quebec, we would say that it is un calvaire lire.The action starts nine years after the Dominion of Canada has been formed Great Britain has given the new country all its along a 3700 strip of land extending from Lake Huron to the Pacific Ocean and going north to the Arctic Ocean in exchange that a railway will be built to Vancouver Canada has thus assumed an enormous debt and is in a absurd hurry to establish control over the troublesome native population still referred to as Indians when this book was published in 1973 The hero Big Bear is a highly principled leader of a collection of Cree tribes who refuses to sign an unfair treaty with Canada that will deprive his people with their land but who simultaneously refuses to resist the Canadians referred to as Whiteskins with violence The author Wiebe who is a Mennonite is unquestionably aware of the fact that while Canada was waging war against the Indians during the 1870s and 1880s it was simultaneously sending agents to Russian to recruit Mennonites to come to Canada to be farmers in the new territory.Possibly because the Mennonite religion preaches pacifism, Wiebe clearly has great admiration for his courageous and honourable protagonist Given Wiebe s noble sentiments, I wish that I could have liked the book which is a confusing mess from which no coherent thesis can be extracted Canada s savage suppression of the Western Indians was the subject of enormous political controversy at the time that it was conducted and created political fault lines that have remained in Canada to this day While I agree with Wiebe I do not perceive that he added anything that had not already been said to the debate almost 100 years earlier. Wiebe has been criticized for appropriating history, but I tend to feel that that s what history s there for I have returned to this book a couple of times, for its stunning, unsensationalized portrayal of this all too forgotten great leader Canadian history may still be depressing, but it s not boring.
He was accused of being an agitator His name Big Bear His crime, inciting his fellow Indians make exorbitant demands In actual sense, he was fighting for his land which he believed he had a right to occupy and to walk on On the other hand, were the Whiteskins who represented the queen Among them, were men like Governor Morris who spoke to them on the same Both parties talked and their words were written down But, when the Indians asked for a copy of what had been written down, the whiteskins refused Instead they asked them to make their names on it and trust them to send a copy to them once they get home So they left and sent a copy back to them Unfortunately, the words no longer said the same thing Half the sweet things had been taken out and the sour ones left They had been deceived The above, is what the Indians in Canada had to suffer during the occupation of Canada by the white man He was deceived into signing a treaty which he believed was the Indian s damnation He believed that it was too inflexible to help them in their condition For example, one of its aims was to change the lifestyle of the Indians from hunters to farmers all at once That was impossible Eventually, Big Bear was arrested and charged with treason felony It means that him together with others intended to levy war against her Majesty s government He was found guilty by a jury and sentenced to three years imprisonment The land was not his but her Majesty s and the latter had graciously given him to live there. I m on page 175, 225 to go, and I ve decided I m going to bolt At first, I thought it s me, having had so little time to read lately, so I never really got into the story But reading other people s reviews, I m obviously not the only one who is bored witless by this book Clearly, this is one of those novels where the author is an outsider to the culture he writes about, and quite evidently way out at sea Wiebe switches points of view very often, but while the white people s perspective is comprehensible, the natives POV often comes across as very clumsy and wooden And insulting IMHO The book is 40 years old, and I suppose political correctness was understood differently back then, or perhaps it was not given much thought at all Anyway, some scenes and remarks in this book were definitely inappropriate I wondered about the writer s intention Why mentioning an Indian warrior poking his nose to ridicule the character or to show his humanity Horsechild was exploring inside his nose with his finger he studied what he found there and then carefully swallowed it Very inappropriate Other examples another warrior who fingers the private parts of his steed, explained in great detail In the same chapter, this warrior watches a sex scene and wonders whether the girl had felt what had happened to her what I could go on and on about numerous upsetting little observations I stumbled upon in this book The afterword says that Wiebe meant to reconstruct the lost voice of a vanished oral tradition Seriously, I have read better books about the reconstruction of a disappeared history Maxine Hong Kingston , and I have read better books written by white men who appropriated the perspective of the Native American Other Dee Brown Creek Mary s Blood Wiebe s book is awful in so many ways For one thing, it is just too mind numbingly dull to take up any of my time. I would ve thought rating a Governor General s Award winner would be a no brainer for anyone but then admitting that reconciliation means than we made an error in judgement that it actually means we, as a nation, committed an act of genocide and we continue to blame the victims of the crime largely, I m pretty sure, because our wealth is based originally on what was stolen from Indigenous people while we self righteously point fingers at other nations far and near The truth is sometimes a bitter pill to swallow, sometimes the perfect day for a nap. Rudy Wiebe s books are never easy to read, but they are good He writes using many narrators and many styles, which can be tough to get into, but allows him to explore historical events from many points of view with great insight Before reading a Rudy Wiebe novel, one must have a working knowledge of the history he discusses, as he is not going to hold your hand and explain it to you In this case, I am very glad that I recently read The Frog Lake Reader, and already knew about the events surrounding the Frog Lake killings, and also that I am well versed in the history surrounding the Northwest Rebellion It has been said that as the son of Mennonite immigrants, Wiebe doesn t have the right to tell the stories of the native people he so often writes about, but he treats their stories with the utmost sensitivity and respect He has obviously done a lot of research, and I think he has an amazing ability to see things from their perspective I am always moved by the heartbreakingly absurd cultural misunderstandings that he weaves into his novels, which help me to understand what the clash of cultures must have been like for those who lived it This book was originally published in 1973, and was probably ahead of its time in not romanticizing the opening of the west, but rather examining the tragedy that befell those who were already there. A little hard to start, but rewarding once you take the time to sit with the book Wiebe gives Big Bear a rich voice that is slow, measured, and comforting, but the fact that this is a settler author writing the words and thoughts of an 1800 s Cree man hangs over the story in a way that makes it hard to really trust the telling Romantic too romantic I found Wiebe s writing style in this book heavy work I did not find this with the others of his works I have read I did learn a lot about the conditions of the treaties The whole thing was quite shameful. (Free Epub) · The Temptations of Big Bear (New Canadian Library) ⚸ What Can That Mean, I And My Family Will Have A Reserve Of One Square Mile So Asks Big Bear Of Governor Morris, Come To Impose A Square Treaty On The Round, Buffalo Covered World Of The Plains Cree As The Buffalo Vanish And The Tension Builds To The Second Riel Rebellion, Big Bear Alone Of The Prairie Chiefs Keeps Up Pressure For A Better Treaty By Refusing To Choose A Reserve He Argues, If Any Man Has The Right To Put A Rope Around Another Man S Neck, Some Day Someone Will Get Choked It Is Big Bear S Story And The Story Of Wandering Spirit, Of Kitty McLean And John McDougall That Is Told In This Novel With Rare And Penetrating Power Permeated With A Sense Of Place And Time, This Eagerly Awaited Work By Rudy Wiebe Reflects The Author S Sensitivity To The Canadian Prairies, Their History, The Minds And Hearts Of Their Diverse PeopleExploring Big Bear S Isolated Struggle, Wiebe Has Encompassed In One Creative Sweep Not Only His Hero S Struggle For Integrity, But The Whole Range And Richness Of The Plains Culture Here Is The Giant Circle Of The Prairie Horizon, And The Joy, The Sorrow, The Pain And The Triumph And The Violence Of Unconquerable Human Beings Faced With Destruction How I Came To Read This Book Ugh, Canadian Lit, and being forced to read this as the last book in the prairie half of the course.The Plot Big Bear is part of the Plains Cree, but he isn t buying what the Canadian government is selling the reserve policy from confederation He tries to hold out for a bigger treaty, but his fellow prairie chiefs are frustrated with him as pressure mounts towards the second Louis Riel rebellion I know other things happened, but just no.The Good The Bad This is one of the worst books I ve ever read I m not even trying to be mean here I think it was a combination of the dry subject matter, the self deprecating nature of Canadian prairie lit, and the lifeless writing there was just no way I could find this book interesting In fact it s one of the few books I ve read that I ll say I only half read because I couldn t get into it at all, up there with Conrad s Heart of Darkness While the story is well intentioned, bringing light to the thoughts and emotions of the people involved with the reserves back in the day, it just had no hook, and I m FROM the prairies where Louis Riel is most famous we have a day named after him In general, in all fairness, I find prairie history really boring, so perhaps that coloured my enjoyment of the book but a really great book should be able to overcome that, and this book did not The Bottom Line A brutal read, you re better off absorbing some nonfiction on the subject.Anything Memorable A classmate of mine, Melanie, ended up in the second part of the University program I took this course was in the first part She confessed to me afterwards that despite her group doing a project on this book, she never finished the book because she found it so boring Or did she say read 50 Book Challenge Nope