SUFFER THE LITTLE CHILDREN Genocide, Indigenous Nations and the Canadian State

$21.00$29.95


Back Cover

    

“Settler-colonialism reveals the brutal face of imperialism in some of its most vicious forms.  This carefully researched and penetrating study focuses on one of its ugliest manifestations, the forcible transferring of indigenous children, and makes a strong case for Canadian complicity in a form of ‘cultural genocide’ – with implications that reach to the Anglosphere generally, and to some of the worst crimes of the ‘civilized world’ in the modern era.” NOAM CHOMSKY

“[B]elongs on the reading list of anyone concerned with social justice and addressing the ongoing colonialism on which the Canadian nation-state stands.” STUDIES IN SOCIAL JUSTICE

“Suffer the Little Children is a path-breaking text that rigorously and robustly documents the numerous ways in which the Canadian state has and continues to commit genocide against Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island.” THE JOURNAL OF TEACHING AND LEARNING 

“Tamara Starblanket’s work is confident, clear and succinct; her work is ground-breaking and provides us with new ways of looking at how the states treatment of First Nations Peoples has gone unrecognised for its genocidal affect. This work provides an excellent critique on the exclusion of cultural genocide from how genocide is defined in international law.”
IRENE WATSON, Research Professor of Law, University of South Australia

  

Clear

Description

SYNOPSIS

Originally approved as a master of laws thesis by a respected Canadian university, this book tackles one of the most compelling issues of our time—the crime of genocide—and whether in fact it can be said to have occurred in relation to the many Original Nations on Great Turtle Island now claimed by a state called Canada.  It has been hailed as ground breaking by many Indigenous and other scholars engaged with this issue, impacting not just Canada but states worldwide where entrapped Indigenous nations face absorption by a dominating colonial state.

Starblanket unpacks Canada’s role in the removal of cultural genocide from the Genocide Convention, though the disappearance of an Original Nation by forced assimilation was regarded by many states as equally genocidal as destruction by slaughter.  Did Canada seek to tailor the definition of genocide to escape its own crimes which were then even ongoing? The crime of genocide, to be held as such under current international law, must address the complicated issue of men’s rea (not just the commission of a crime, but the specific intent to do so). This book permits readers to make a judgment on whether this was the case.

Starblanket examines how genocide was operationalized in Canada, focused primarily on breaking the intergenerational transmission of culture from parents to children. Seeking to absorb the new generations into a different cultural identity—English-speaking, Christian, Anglo-Saxon, termed Canadian—Canada seized children from their parents, and oversaw and enforced the stripping of their cultural beliefs, languages and traditions, replacing them by those still in process of being established by the emerging Canadian state.

  

She outlines the array and extent of the destruction which inevitably took place as part of the effort to bring about such a wrenching change—forcible indoctrination by means of massive and widespread death by disease and dilapidated living conditions, torture, forced starvation, labor, and sexual predation—collateral damage to Canada’s effort to absorb diverse original nations into one larger, alien and dominating body politic.  The cumulative effects of genocide continue to be exhibited by the victims and their descendants who suffer from the collective trauma, primarily in healthy proper parenting, which results in ongoing forcible removals via the child welfare systems to this day.

Book Details

Publish Date

2018

Page Count

374

ISBN

978-0-9986947-7-1

Ebook ISBN

978-0-9986947-8-8

Options

eBook, Paperback

Author

Tamara Starblanket

Reviews

8 reviews for SUFFER THE LITTLE CHILDREN Genocide, Indigenous Nations and the Canadian State

  1. NOAM CHOMSKY

    “Settler-colonialism reveals the brutal face of imperialism in some of its most vicious forms. This carefully researched and penetrating study focuses on one of its ugliest manifestations, the forcible transferring of indigenous children, and makes a strong case for Canadian complicity in a form of ‘cultural genocide’ – with implications that reach to the Anglosphere generally, and to some of the worst crimes of the ‘civilized world’ in the modern era.”
    NOAM CHOMSKY

  2. PETER D’ERRICO, Professor of Law, University of Massachusetts

    “Tamara Starblanket’s book provides a much needed examination and critique of the ‘residential school’ system that forcibly transferred Indigenous children from their families, communities, and nations into institutions run by the colonizer state—in this case, Canada. Despite the fact that the United Nations 1948 Convention on Genocide explicitly includes ‘forcibly transferring children of the group to another group’ in its definition of ‘genocide,’ there are those who deny that the colonial ‘civilizing’ project amounted to genocide. Starblanket demonstrates that the residential schools in fact aimed at destroying the most intimate level of Indigenous life—the child-parent relation—employing brutal beatings, solitary confinement and other horrible punishments, often resulting in children’s deaths. The goal of the schools was to prevent Indigenous societies from perpetuating themselves. Though officially repudiated, the residential schools produced a continuing social and institutional legacy. Starblanket’s work brings this history and its legacy effects to our awareness and shows that ‘the road home’ requires an emphasis on Indigenous self-determination.”
    PETER D’ERRICO,
    Professor of Law, University of Massachusetts

  3. STEVEN T. NEWCOMB

    “Tamara Starblanket has skillfully taken on one of the most difficult and contentious issues, genocide. With intellectual courage and determination, she has approached the issue from the perspective of a Cree woman, scholar, and attorney who has first-hand knowledge of the deadly and destructive intergenerational impacts of Canada’s domination and dehumanization of Original Nations and Peoples.”
    STEVEN T. NEWCOMB (Shawnee, Lenape),
    author, Pagans in the Promised Land Decoding the
    Christian Doctrine of Discovery

  4. WARD CHURCHILL,

    “This is heavy stuff, about which much more should be said, and Starblanket is unsparing in saying it…I am proud to call her sister, and to thank her.
    “from the Preface by WARD CHURCHILL,
    author, A Little Matter of Genocide

  5. KIM PETERSEN, Dissident Voice

    “A particular example of an under-the-radar genocide is that carried out by European settler-colonialists who denationalized all the Original Nations of the western hemisphere. There are non-indigenous people who are aware and acknowledge that genocide occurred, but few would realize or acknowledge that the genocide continues. That is
    much of the importance of Tamara Starblanket’s Suffer the Little Children: Genocide, Indigenous Nations and the Canadian State…Starblanket argues, “The application of the law [will] show beyond a reasonable doubt, to say nothing of a preponderance of the evidence, that the Canadian government is culpable for crimes of genocide.” (p 244) After reading Suffer the Little Children, it is difficult to rationally or morally reach a different conclusion.
    The book is bold and well-argued, and it should be read widely…”
    KIM PETERSEN, Dissident Voice

  6. KERRY COAST, author, THE COLONIAL PRESENT

    “One of the most important things about this book is its refusal to allow Canada to be considered a “post-colonial” state. The evidence against Canada’s genocidal “forcible removal of children” during the Indian Residential School era is connected to the present-day foster care system, which targets young Aboriginal families in particular: still forcibly removing children from the genocidally-targeted group and placing them with members of another group. With the colonizing group: be they white, yellow, beige, or brown families. And still removing those Indigenous children with the same genocidal objective of “bringing about the destruction of the group, in whole or in part,” in order to continue colonizing and absorbing the yet-unceded Indigenous homelands…

    Another of the book’s most important accomplishments is Starblanket’s assessment of Canada’s official federal treatment of the Indian Residential School fallout as having only to do with individuals. Individual survivors were compensated under the 2006 Indian Residential Schools Survivors’ Settlement Agreement. In fact, the intended and
    effective result of the “schools” was a series of national crises among the Indigenous Nations whose lands Canada tries to claim. With their children gone, and their languages and systems of culture and governance uncertain, the crime was against nations – not individuals. Starblanket breaks down the very different legal implications…”
    KERRY COAST, author,
    THE COLONIAL PRESENT: The Rule of Ignorance and the
    Role of Law in British Columbia
    Read full review

  7. AZIZ CHOUDRY, Studies in Social Justice

    “Suffer the Little Children belongs on the reading list of anyone concerned with social justice and addressing the ongoing colonialism on which the Canadian nation-state stands. At a time when the terms ‘decolonization’ and ‘decolonial’ are being taken up in many settings, and open to a wide range of meanings and interpretations, many of which eschew an actual politics of decolonization and self-determination, this book is not decolonization-lite. Indeed, in the words of the late Arthur Manuel (2015), it makes a vital contribution to ‘unsettling Canada.’ For those seriously committed to social justice and confronting and transforming colonial power relations, taking up the challenges that Tamara Starblanket puts forward, including her perspective on the Canadian state’s reconciliation project, would be a step in the right direction.”
    AZIZ CHOUDRY, Studies in Social Justice, Vol. 13, Issue 1.

  8. TRAVIS HAY

    “[W]hile there is no better monograph to historicize and contextualize the legalities of genocide in a Canadian settler colonial context, Starblanket’s contribution in Suffer the Little Children also succeeds in challenging a national discourse of denial and leads readers to question the contemporary realities of genocide beyond the residential schooling system and into the present-day power relations and inequities that make up material conditions across Canada.”
    TRAYIS HAY, The Journal of Teaching and Learning, Fall 2018, Vol. 12, No. 1, pp. 53–55. http://www.uwindsor.ca/jtl

Only logged in customers who have purchased this product may leave a review.