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Rez Road Follies: Canoes, Casinos, Computers, and Birch Bark Baskets

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The author relates his own life experiences to offer a view of contemporary Native American life.


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The author relates his own life experiences to offer a view of contemporary Native American life.

30 review for Rez Road Follies: Canoes, Casinos, Computers, and Birch Bark Baskets

  1. 5 out of 5

    Flint Xavier

    Quarantine has been hard with cancelling powwows, not being able to see family and community, and not being able to go to bingo with my grandma. I was gifted this book and wow I am so glad I read this at this moment in time. "Rez Road Follies" is about Anishinaabe identity, the Fond du Lac Reservation, Minnesota in general, and the treatment of Indigneous people today. Racism, importance of the seasons, violation of treaty rights, kinship, and environmental racism are just a few of the topics th Quarantine has been hard with cancelling powwows, not being able to see family and community, and not being able to go to bingo with my grandma. I was gifted this book and wow I am so glad I read this at this moment in time. "Rez Road Follies" is about Anishinaabe identity, the Fond du Lac Reservation, Minnesota in general, and the treatment of Indigneous people today. Racism, importance of the seasons, violation of treaty rights, kinship, and environmental racism are just a few of the topics that Northrup discusses in his book. Reading Northrup's poems, stories, jokes, and truths is like sitting around and listening to an elder tell stories. It's truly a special reading experience. I am trying to learn Ojibwemowin so I also loved all the Ojibwe to english translations in this book.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Josie

    First of all, this should be required reading for everyone in Minnesota. Northrup was born and raised on the Fon Du Lac reservation in Northern Minnesota. He begins by discussing the importance of family to the Anishinaabeg. He goes on to tell his own story about going to boarding school in Pipestone, MN; being away from his home and family, not being allowed to speak his language, and how that affected him. Having gone through the Minnesota educational system, we were not taught anything about b First of all, this should be required reading for everyone in Minnesota. Northrup was born and raised on the Fon Du Lac reservation in Northern Minnesota. He begins by discussing the importance of family to the Anishinaabeg. He goes on to tell his own story about going to boarding school in Pipestone, MN; being away from his home and family, not being allowed to speak his language, and how that affected him. Having gone through the Minnesota educational system, we were not taught anything about boarding schools (and were taught very little about Indigenous history in general) even though there were SIXTEEN of these schools within our own borders. It's pretty incredible to look back and think about how we are taught that Indigenous people are "of the past", and try to sweep all of the "bad" under the rug. Almost like they don't exist in our modern world and that the US governments / white folks treatment of Indigenous people was just, and fair. Obviously, this is far from the truth. Northrup discusses the process and importance of wild ricing, becoming a marine, collecting Maple syrup, connecting with his grandson, life on the reservation, mascots, trapping, traveling all over the world to present his work, colonization, fishing, the trials and tribulations of tribal government, traveling to powwows, casinos, weaving Birchbark baskets, treaty rights and sovereignty. I definitely learned a lot and really appreciated Northrup's writing style - he was real, honest but also has an incredible sense of humor. I just want to reiterate how important it is to learn about Indigenous history. Learn about the land you are living on. More books written by Indigenous authors need to be required in our school system.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Herman

    Wonderful, a new author for me to follow, the book written with the famous dry wit of native humor was a great window into another corner of Native culture Anishinaabeg of whom I knew little, it was also a great story about life, survival, passing on traditions, and Vietnam since the author is also a vet. My copy will be mailed off shortly to my cousin who is a Vietnam veteran himself and should appreciate that section of the book. I compare this to Miranda Deborah Bad Indians as being sort of a Wonderful, a new author for me to follow, the book written with the famous dry wit of native humor was a great window into another corner of Native culture Anishinaabeg of whom I knew little, it was also a great story about life, survival, passing on traditions, and Vietnam since the author is also a vet. My copy will be mailed off shortly to my cousin who is a Vietnam veteran himself and should appreciate that section of the book. I compare this to Miranda Deborah Bad Indians as being sort of a modern ying and yang of native contemporary literature. The master storyteller who happens to be very funny, and the deep thinking dark poet of pain and survival and reclaiming history I think between these two books I could teach a college level native history class easily

  4. 4 out of 5

    Austen

    Everyone who reads this book will want Jim Northrup for a grandpa. His sense of humor, his wisdom, and his honesty about the world make this book more than just a sneak peek into the lives if the Minnesota Ojibwe--it's a collection of stories to send you to sleep at night, ready to get up in the morning and make life better. I've lived in Minnesota my whole life, and I'd never heard of Jim, and never read about the Ojibwe/Anishinaabe people in school, which is just unacceptable. This book sparke Everyone who reads this book will want Jim Northrup for a grandpa. His sense of humor, his wisdom, and his honesty about the world make this book more than just a sneak peek into the lives if the Minnesota Ojibwe--it's a collection of stories to send you to sleep at night, ready to get up in the morning and make life better. I've lived in Minnesota my whole life, and I'd never heard of Jim, and never read about the Ojibwe/Anishinaabe people in school, which is just unacceptable. This book sparked a desire to learn more about the native communities still living here--from the Fond du Lac band in the northern part of the state, to the Lakota in the southwest who are trying to keep the Dakota Access Pipeline from poisoning their waters. This book is a must read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Trudy Ackerblade

    Reading The Rez Road Follies was a wonderful experience. Jim Northrup takes his big black kettle and throws in family, language, tradition, respect for the earth, racism, politics, war, and gambling, then adds a giant amount of humor as seasoning. He cooks it and serves it as a beautiful Anishinaabe banquet of love. Magwitch Jim.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jeremiah

    This guy lives on my reservation and I found this book in Berkley, CA at a small book store there, new. I read a some portions of this book and laughed my head off (mostly indian humor that most people might not think is as funny, but it is!). Unfortunately, Northrup is either hit or miss in this book and when he misses even the part of me that wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt couldn't give even smirk. Good effort but better luck next time. This guy lives on my reservation and I found this book in Berkley, CA at a small book store there, new. I read a some portions of this book and laughed my head off (mostly indian humor that most people might not think is as funny, but it is!). Unfortunately, Northrup is either hit or miss in this book and when he misses even the part of me that wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt couldn't give even smirk. Good effort but better luck next time.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    Jim Northrup won a Minnesota Book Award for Walking the Rez Road, but he should have won it for this book. He has maintained the same direct writing style as in the earlier work, but his natural gift for story-telling is more apparent in this collection of essays. He skillfully informs, sometimes startles, and entertains the reader with his commentary on being an American-American. This book should be required reading in Minnesota history classes.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Francesca

    I really liked this book because I wanted to learn more about Native American life and culture in the US. I am sad though that the author Jim Northrup, in his chapter on fighting in Vietnam, completely misses the link between the oppression of people of color in the US by white people--which he documents thoroughly--and the oppression of third world people by the US government via its military.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    Jim Northrup is funny and political and honest and amazing!! I love his narrative and storytelling. I appreciated his stance on the use of the word Indian (not referring to peoples of India). Good stuff!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Avis Black

    Author has a serious attitude and he's produced a likeable book. Author has a serious attitude and he's produced a likeable book.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    A funny look at "immigrant communities" (white Americans) by a Native American author. A funny look at "immigrant communities" (white Americans) by a Native American author.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

    please read this book right now---the combination of Ojibwe humor and history is so important.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Leiune

    I'm reading this for my Minnesota History class and so far it's pretty good. I'm reading this for my Minnesota History class and so far it's pretty good.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Track McCreary

  15. 5 out of 5

    Audra

  16. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sharlet Mullen

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kristal Roberts

  19. 4 out of 5

    Angie

  20. 4 out of 5

    Marc

  21. 4 out of 5

    Brie

  22. 5 out of 5

    Maaganiit Noori

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kara

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ariana Brinckerhoff

  25. 5 out of 5

    Donyelle h

  26. 4 out of 5

    Ruth

  27. 5 out of 5

    Li Boyd

  28. 4 out of 5

    Fae

  29. 5 out of 5

    Dwreads

  30. 4 out of 5

    Craig Werner

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