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Kluane First Nation

The Indigenous History Book Prize


Kluane First Nation, Lhu’aan Man Keyi Dan Kwanje Naatsat: Kluane Lake Country People Speak Strong. Figure 1 Publishing, 2023.

Kluane First Nation, is a truly collaborative, transdisciplinary, historical, prescient, and creative work with broad appeal. At the centre of the work are the Kluane Elders who share their stories, songs, and language, as they call to the future generations to “remember who you are.” The knowledge-documenting project is packaged with archival and modern photographs, and provides context for the profound changes that were brought on by settlers that Kluane First Nation has undergone. Lhù’ààn Mân Keyí Dań Kwánje Nààtsat offers insights into the creation of the self-governing First Nation, which recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of their self-governance agreement.


Tom Gordon

Tom Gordon, Called Upstairs: Moravian Inuit Music in Labrador. McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2023.

Called Upstairs demonstrates the ways in which Inuit were able to reconceptualize choral and instrumental music as vehicles for spiritual and artistic expression, despite these being introduced as tools of Christian colonialism in the 18th and 19th centuries. Gordon has drawn from nearly 20,000 pages of music manuscripts to illustrate the ways in which Inuit not only adapted compositions by European composers from the age of Mozart and Haydn to align with their own musical practices but has, further, centered the significance of original compositions by Inuit composers such as Natanael Illiniartitsijok. This book prioritizes cultural continuity in an era that witnessed significant change both socially and politically, making it a significant addition to Inuit scholarship.



Lorraine Weir

Chief Roger William

Lorraine Weir with Chief Roger William, Lha yudit’ih We Always Find a Way: Bringing the Tŝilhqot’in Title Case Home. Talonbooks, 2023.

This book records the knowledge and experiences of the Tsilhqot’in people and their allies regarding the landmark Tsilhqot’in title case. Narrated from multiple perspectives, including that of Chief Roger William and 41 other important community members and allies, the book weaves together creation stories, accounts of genocide through diseases such as smallpox, the trauma of residential schools, and resistance associated with logging and mining during the Tŝilhqot’in War. It also covers modern direct actions against industrial resource extraction and the twenty-five-year legal battle to recognize Tsilhqot’in land rights through the 2014 Supreme Court ruling that affirmed Indigenous title to land off reserve for the first time in Canadian history. The book’s conversational style makes it accessible to both Tsilhqot’in community members and the general public, highlighting a holistic worldview that interconnects the Tsilhqot’in people with their land and heritage.