Akwesasne

Michael Bonnard and his brother Edward, main characters in SKIN OF THE WOLF, are Abenakis born and raised at Akwesasne.  Akwesase is a Mohawk reservation, quite large, and spread across the US-Canada border.  Michael and Edward have a Mohawk father, but their mother was Abenaki, and Native American affiliation goes through the maternal line.

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In the sixties and seventies Akwesasne produced a number of people and publications active in various movements for Native American rights.  In 1979 the Akwesasne Freedom School was established, where the entire curriculum is in the Mohawk language.  This link, from the Freedom School page, will get you to the text of the Thanksgiving Prayer, not a prayer for white people’s Thanksgiving Day but a prayer of giving thanks that opens meetings and deliberations in the Mohawk nation.

 

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