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Embracing Multicultural Day with Paul Goble

Embracing Multicultural Day with Paul Goble Posted on January 21, 20165 Comments

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Did you know January 27th is Multicultural Book Day?

The event is hosted each year by Multicultural Children’s Book Day (MCCBD) co-founders, Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen, and the following 11 amazing Co-Host Bloggers;

At the end of this post you will find the link to their book bundle giveaway for the 27th. 

You can also take a quick look to see who these Bloggers are, here on the Multicultural Children’s Book Day website!

They have come together to help promote awareness of valuable literature for children.  In particular books where children can see their cultures, heritages, and traditions being represented.

For me this project really serves a need that I felt was neglected while growing up with a mixed American heritage.  More importantly as a parent I struggle with how to help my own children explore the complexities of our culture.  Sharing our stories with each other and with other members of our community is an important part of helping ourselves stay connected to what’s important.

Which is why I’m taking the time today to share with you two books, Red Cloud’s War and Custer’s Last Battle, sent to me by Wisdom Tales Press to review for you.

I don’t know about you, but in high school I had a very one-sided account of native battles and Indian traditions.  I would go so far to say much of what was covered was generalized and pretty forgettable.  I think most of us can say that we might be familiar with Custer’s last stand, but does anyone remember what the Fetterman Fight was about?

So imagine my pleasure of opening a package with two of Paul Goble’s works!

The Author, Paul Goble

I discovered that Mr. Goble initially wrote these books in the 70’s.  First because he noticed the disparity in history lessons and wanted to give his son a true account of these battles. Secondly, having been profoundly influenced as a child he wanted to honor the culture of the Indians.  Since then he has continued to use his talents to illustrate more than 30 books.

Paul Goble’s passion for the retelling of Indian heritage influenced him to learn and master Native American drawing techniques.  A couple of years ago he was presented with the chance to update these books.  I am excited that he decided to do so! In 2015 these books were republished with additional information, a better design, and original artwork!

You should know that his Ledger-book art work, including those presented in these books, can be viewed at the South Dakota Art Museum.  The museum notes that his collection is the only one they have of a living artist, in it’s entirety.  Looking at these books in my hands, I can see that the museum has a beautiful treasure worth seeing in-person.

Why this book is not for you.

I feel I must at this time warn some of you.

These books may not be for you, if you are overly sensitive to an accurate portrayal of imperfect people making decisions.

By that I mean that both sides of the story are present.  Including insults, prejudices, and violent acts in accordance with the tradition of war.  You will not find a white-washed versions of these events here.

You will find the travesty of war.  For that reason I believe it is important to share these stories.

Remember the past

What you will also find is Paul Goble’s attempt to bring to life a piece of history that otherwise would be forgotten.  He does a magnificent job of keeping a balanced perspective! He also includes a list of resources that you can use to learn more about the people involved and the events that transpired!

Why you should read it.

Now what I love about both of these books is that it is told from the narrative of an Indian boy as events unfold.  The boys in both books are fictional, while the history and the thoughts presented reflect the tremendous amount of research that went into it.

To give you an idea of how persistent Paul Goble was in including the Indian narrative the recorded history as found in the U.S. archives, I am including a section of the reading.

On the left is the Indian boy’s narrative.  On the right is the relevant perspective to accompany it.

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The reading is intense but Mr. Goble’s gift will ensnare you throughout.

Red Cloud’s War: Brave Eagle’s Account of the Fetterman Fight.

In Red Cloud’s War, Robert Lewis includes a foreword about how the events of time end up becoming stories we pass on as part of our identity.  As a community specialist he actively participates in the Cherokee Nation cultural outreach program.  As an Adjunct Professor of Art at Northeastern State University, he helps keep the Native arts and crafts alive.

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Why is this battle important?

In an attempt to establish the Bozeman Trail for safe passage to Montana, Washington attempted to simultaneously gain the trust of Indians and build forts along the way.  They did garner agreement from some of the Chiefs in the area and falsely reported that the area would be easily secured for travel.

Instead of being able to provide protection for travelers, the soldiers found themselves hard pressed to  hold the forts.  The Fetterman Fight became known as the Army’s worst defeat with the Indians, until the Battle of Little Bighorn.  According to Doane Robinson, State Historian of South Dakota, it was also the first and only time the United States had negotiated a peace treaty and gained nothing in return.

Custer’s Last Battle: Red Hawk’s Account of the Battle of the Little Bighorn.

In Custer’s Last Battle the foreword is given by Joe Medicine Crow, the grandson of one of Custer’s scouts.  he vouches for Paul Goble’s accuracy in the retelling.  He is also the last of the Crow War Chiefs due to his actions while serving with the 103rd Infantry.

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Why is this battle important?

Custer’s Last Stand covers the events that lead up to the Battle at Little Bighorn. Even though this battle was a great victory for the Indians it would also be the last stand for the Indians.  This book represents an accurate and spell-bound account of one of the most studied engagements in American history.

After reviewing this with my family, we feel these books are a great place to begin a mature discussion of these battles and the impact war has on it’s participants and their lives!

It has been our pleasure to review such beautiful books.

In the spirit of the project we have been asked to find a new home for the books at our local library.  I would love to keep them but I know they would serve a greater number of people in the community if we shared it!

Wish us luck in finding a librarian who will sign the adoption papers!

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Here is Your Invitation!

The Multicultural Children’s Book Day project is inviting you to celebrate the day with them by attending a Twitter party on January 27th.

Go to MCCBD’s Twitter Party & Book Bundles for the details and then signup for the party so you don’t miss out on a chance to win one of the 12 bundles of books they are giving away!

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Multicultural Children’s Book day 2016 Medallion Level Sponsors! #ReadYourWorld

Platinum: Wisdom Tales Press * StoryQuest Books*Lil Libros

Gold: Author Tori Nighthawk*Candlewick Press

Silver: Lee and Low Books*Chronicle Books*Capstone Young Readers* China Institute.org*

Bronze: Pomelo Books* Author Jacqueline Woodson*Papa Lemon Books*Goosebottom Books*Author Gleeson Rebello*ShoutMouse Press*Author Mahvash Shahegh

Read Your World

Attention Teachers!

Junior Library Guild has agreed to sponsor this year’s MCCBD 2016 Classroom Reading Challenge by donating 200 books to classrooms!

Which means Teachers and school Librarians can win a free book and possibly a visit from an author via Skype!  You can view the books available to you on their webpage; The Challenge has Begun!

On that page is a link that will direct you to the signup page for the reading challenge.

If you are not a teacher or librarian, you can help by spreading the word to your teacher/librarian/classroom connections so they can get involved in this program. There is no cost to participate and the whole process is simple!

Multicultural Children’s Book Day would like to encourage readers, parents, teachers, caregivers and librarians to follow along the fun book reviews, author visits, event details, and other multicultural children’s books by participating in their linky on their blog and by sharing their hashtag #ReadYourWorld on Twitter, Instagram, and other social media.

You can also help by tweeting this-

[Tweet “Teachers! Earn a FREE #Multicultural Kids Book for Your Classroom! #teachers #books #teacherlife http://ow.ly/UUy96”]

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Next post I’ll share with you 5 Ideas to Celebrate Native Americans

*Update* We found a home for our books!

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