Dr. Gregory Younging, Professor of Indigenous Studies at UBC-Okanagan and Managing Editor, Theytus Books, the first Aboriginal-owned publishing house in Canada visited TRU to speak about his new book Elements of Indigenous Style: A Guide for Writing By and About Indigenous Peoples. He spoke about his reasons for writing this book, and the process of writing it— which spanned many years. He also spoke to the 22 principles of Indigenous style referenced in the book. As a non-Indigenous faculty member, a number of these resonated strongly with me including (but not limited to):
Principle 1: The purpose of Indigenous style
The purpose of Indigenous style is to produce works:
– that reflect Indigenous realities as they are perceived by Indigenous Peoples;
– that are truthful and insightful in their Indigenous content;
– and that are respectful of the cultural integrity of Indigenous Peoples.
Principle 3: Indigenous Literatures and Can Lit
Indigenous Literatures are their own cannon and not a subgroup of Can Lit
Principle 6: Collaboration
Work in collaboration with Indigenous Peoples and authors to ensure that Indigenous material is expressed with the highest possible level of cultural authenticity
*I have quoted these brief excerpts from Dr. Younging’s text in the interest in sharing some of the content which spoke to me as an individual.
After speaking about his book, Dr. Younging engaged in a question and answer session on his work and his views on Indigenous experience in publishing, higher education, and in contemporary Canadian culture generally.
Elements of Indigenous Style: A Guide for Writing By and About Indigenous Peoples is available for purchase at the TRU Bookstore.