The Inconvenient Indian - A Curious Account of Native People in North America, by Thomas King
I saw this book in Canada, and ordered it from Amazon after I got back. It's a good book, about the plight of Native Americans, or the First Nations, or just Indians, whatever we choose to call them. And it's a depressing story, as I already knew, and an enduring problem. Whether it's the North American Indians, the Australian Aborigines or the South American Amerindians, one cannot be but depressed about the fate of those peoples who were vanquished and had their way of life destroyed by the Europeans. But then what happened cannot be undone, and what can it be done now about them? It's not easy, and I don't think there it's possible to keep different civilizations in the same countries, be they Australia, Canada, the USA or other. Along the centuries of Human history, civilizations rose and fell, some peoples conquered other peoples and assimilated them - the Romans are a good example. I didn't see any Indians in Canada, but I remember seeing Aborigines in the Northern Territory in Australia, and I couldn't stop wondering how much better they would be if they were an integral part of the Western society around them. I believe that basic human aspirations are the same everywhere, and that every culture has its value - wouldn't it be possible that these cultures were integrated in our own culture, keeping some of their values, taking what's positive in our civilization, bringing their knowledge, and enjoying the same rights as we do? I know it's not easy, I'm not that naive, but I honestly think it's possible.