The collections currently comprise approximately 12,000 items including about 6,000 books, 450 videos, 5,000 vertical file materials, curriculum resources, journals and newspapers, maps, posters, theses and dissertations, the G.A. (Bud) Mintz special collection, and some archival materials. The collections focus on First Nations in British Columbia, including contextual materials on Canadian First Nations, in addition to issues of national and international interest to First Nations and Indigenous peoples. X̱wi7x̱wa collects materials written from First Nations perspectives, such as materials produced by First Nations, First Nations organizations, tribal councils, schools, publishers, researchers, writers and scholars.
In honour of Orange Shirt Day on September 30, Xwi7xwa Library is highlighting materials in our collection with related themes: the residential school experience, healing journeys of the survivors and their families, and the ongoing process of reconciliation. Our materials on these topics include a range of formats (books, DVDs, government reports, graphic novels, and more), created for diverse audiences, including children, teachers, and scholars, Indigenous community members and non-Indigenous allies. To find these materials at Xwi7xwa, search “Residential schools” on our online catalogue and filter by Location: Xwi7xwa Library, or try searching for subject headings starting with First Nations–Residential schools. Our research guide on the Indian Residential School System in Canada is another excellent resource. As always, you’re welcome to come by Xwi7xwa to browse our shelves, check out our display, or ask us for help!
At Xwi7xwa, we are proud of our growing collection of materials that celebrate the two-spirit, queer, and trans members of our communities. Our collection contains a range of genres and formats (including novels, memoirs, poetry, graphic novels, DVDs, and academic works) centering Indigenous perspectives on gender and sexuality. More and more of this material is being created by (rather than about) Indigenous people who identify as part of the LGBTQ2S community. Our collection features Gwen Benaway, Daniel Heath Justice, Qwo-Li Driskill, Kent Monkman, Thirza Cuthand, Tomson Highway, Sharron Proulx-Turner, Joshua Whitehead, Chrystos, and many more authors, artists, and scholars. Try searching the UBC Library Catalogue using keywords like two-spirit, queer, transgender, bisexual, lesbian, gay, or LGBT, and filtering by Location: Xwi7xwa Library. Or just come into the library to browse the shelves and check out our display!
Check out these titles and local performances; explore the creativity of amazing artists, performers, poets, and more!
Aboriginal Music in Contemporary Canada: Echoes and Exchanges edited by Anna Hoefnagels and Beverley Diamond
This collection narrates a story of resistance and renewal, struggle and success, as indigenous musicians in Canada negotiate who they are and who they want to be.
It demonstrates how music is a powerful tool for articulating the social challenges faced by Aboriginal communities and an effective way to affirm indigenous strength and pride.
Where the Blood Mixes by Kevin Loring
A story about loss and redemption. Caught in a shadowy pool of alcoholic pain and guilt, Floyd is a man who has lost everyone he holds most dear. Now after more than two decades, his daughter Christine returns home to confront her father. Set during the salmon run, Where the Blood Mixes takes us to the bottom of the river, to the heart of a People.
Children of God: a Musical by Corey Payette
A powerful musical about an Oji-Cree family whose children were taken away to a residential school in Northern Ontario. The play tells the story of one family: Tommy and Julia, who are trying to survive in the harsh environment of a religious school, and their mother, Rita, who never stops trying to get them back. The impact of this experience on the lives of them all is profound and devastating, yet the story moves toward redemption
Practical Dreamers: conversations with movie artists by Mike Hoolboom
Welcome to the world of fringe movies. Here, artists have been busy putting queer shoulders to the wheels, or bending light to talk about First Nations rights (and making it funny, to boot), or demonstrating how a personality can be taken apart and put back together, all during a ten-minute movie which might take years to make.
Indianland by Lesley Belleau
This collection of poems written from a female and Indigenous point of view and incorporate Anishinaabemowin throughout. Time is cyclical, moving from present day back to first contact and forward again. Themes of sexuality, birth, memory, and longing are explored, images of blood, plants (milkweed, yarrow, cattails), and petroglyphs reoccur, and touchstone issues in Indigenous politics are addressed.
The People Have Never Stopped Dancing: Native American modern dance histories by Jacqueline Shea Murphy
In this first major study of contemporary Native American dance, Jacqueline Shea Murphy shows how these concert performances are at once diverse and connected by common influences. Illustrating how Native dance enacts cultural connections to land, ancestors, and animals, as well as spiritual and political concerns, Shea Murphy challenges stereotypes and offers new ways of recognizing the agency of bodies on stage.
Xwi7xwa would like to thank Elena Pederson, Publications & Web Services Assistant, from UBC Education Library for her work on designing our digital signage.
Ancestry library Edition is a partnership between ancestry.com and ProQuest, and offers a wealth of genealogical resources from the United States and the United Kingdom, alongside record collections from Canada, Europe, Australia and other countries.
You can access Ancestry Library Edition through the UBC Library Index and Database collection, or find a research guide for the databases here. We’d really appreciate your feedback on this resource, which you can give in person or by following this link.
Ethnic NewsWatch offers coverage of grassroots, community, and independent press publications and is particularly valuable as a source of Indigenous newspapers and newsletters. It is an older database, as you might notice from the terminology and metadata it uses, but is still being updated with new issues of community-led and small press Indigenous publications.
You can access and explore Ethnic NewsWatch through the UBC Library Index and database collection, or visit ProQuest’s research guide for further information. Once again, we welcome and feedback on both the contents and the experience of using the resource, either in person or through the feedback form.
We’re running these trials to see how these resources might fit your needs and the needs of our collection at Xwi7xwa, so please get in touch and let us know what you think.
You probably know that November 11th is Remembrance Day. Xwi7xwa Library will be closed on Monday November 13th to commemorate this and to honour members of the armed forces who died in the line of duty.
November 8th is not a federal holiday and but the date is still important. This is Aboriginal Veterans Day, a date set aside to mark the thousand of Indigenous, Metis and Inuit people who fought and died for this land. Indigenous voices are too easily lost amidst the poppies and parades, yet one Veterans group estimates that 12,000 Indigenous people served in the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War.
We’re proud to hold some of these stories in our collection and to be able to highlight them this week. Please visit Xwi7xwa Library to discover further titles and find out more.