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E South for her education and was exposed to modern Western life She lost fluency in her native languageReturning to her Arctic home she became involved in education She saw how Southern colonialism was destroying her people s culture resulting in a rise of addiction and suicides Sheila became an activist for her people first in education and culture preservation and later in environment and climate change The warming of the Arctic caused by Southern use of fossil fuels also means the destruction of her people s way of life the animals they depend upon and the very land they live on Her efforts to link climate change to human rights earned her consideration for the Pulitzer Prize lost that year to Al GoreSheila s childhood memories offer a great understanding of her native culture and her early experience in the South informs readers how traditional nowledge is lost Her chapters on her activism and achievements are detailed and sometimes overwhelming I can t imagine how she maintained the energy and strength to do what she has done I received a free ebook from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and unbiased review You now it s a hard book to rate this one Watt Cloutier s message is important and also uniue There are many books to read about Canada s aboriginal experience past and present both generally horrifying maybe hopeful but this one is uniue in its Inuk narrative which is different and really vital I m convinced I very much appreciated the book for this perspective and was really truly oddly embarrassingly uninformed before reading it She covers a really wide range of issues all of which I found interesting housing issues cultural issues issues of governmental support good and bad of course environmental issues human rights issues mental health and addictions issues and on and on It s a comprehensive picture I think of where we re at with our north And so much of what she said was a learning experience for a first generation southerner Canadian like me From how hunting teaches patience and uiet to how governmental programs help and hinder Inuk independence to the global impact of climate change And so it s really hard to settle on a star rating for a book that aims to educate and uphold the human rights of an entire populationAs an experience I found myself bogged down by the bureaucracy speak of the book If you re a government worker with a comfort in acronyms and red tape you ll slide through the book easier than I did As a regular Joe I just don t speak the language and so I had to resist the temptation to skim I am pleased the book has been written and pleased to have had the opportunity to read it I wish the book well in the upcoming Canada Reads debates it s on the shortlist and think given the right defender it may well have a chance of winning This book is not a super highway to anywhere But a book need not be especially a memoir Cards on the table I usually avoid mem It took me uite awhile to read this book No fault of the book Sheila is clear in her writing Her mandate is simple in its delivery Her passion is endless She is unapologetic She is bold I saw her speak during Wordfest in Calgary this past fall She isn t an entertainer and seemed set apart from the other writers on the panel And now I now why Sheilas book isn t just a biography but a warning A collection of warnings spanning numerous years from all over the arctic using her home front as the map of certain disaster I have to admit I am a changed person I had very little Computers knowledge of the arctic and its people Never mind what the last 60 years of colonialism has done to them But the shocker for me was to realize that colonialism is near synonymous with industrialism which is the sole perpetrator of ecoside Sheila makes an interesting statement at the end of the book about fusing culture with economics there by creating a personal economy that thrives off their natural conservation efforts that are already in place to preserve their culture That feels like a word circle I think it has merrit And I am going to read the reference material she suggested Two Ways of Knowing Merging Science with Traditional Knowledge On the note ofnowledge read the uote from Rosemarie Kuptana on page 319 It challeges the idea of 1 supreme education system Sheila challenges that notion a few times in the book She feels that her culture and traditional nowledge offers a wise and empowering base to build on and she back it up I have a very new view of how the other end of my countrymen live Reading the book made me feel like I was late to the game Stupid even And horrified at my own countries silence on Sheilas human Rights platform And as the tug of war wages on for access to the arctics resources my heart is heavy for Sheila and her people I feel as if it s to late As I reread this I wonder at my own lack of horror at my disconnected view of global connectedness and how my own choices and ignorance make me culpable to this catastrophe If I dare ask the uestion What can I do then it should be answered with than Well I don t shop at Walmart and I recycle I feel ill Different I haven t read alot of biographies 2 others to be exact So I can t really comment on the how to of it all But I had read reviews that this book wasn t truly a biography I disagree Minus the personal gore and guts of everyday life she shared the heart of what makes her life matter to her And she shared that with alot of abbreviationsFive stars for shattering the rose coloured glasses I "ve never been a fan of environmentalism but finally an activist who at least has important and messages At least "never been a fan of environmentalism but finally an activist who least has important and deep messages At least s not giving ludicrous demands that everybody should go vegan and abolish fossil fuels like a certain over privileged sour faced teenager we ve all come to now While I m apathetic still about climate change Watt Cloutier does make some good points about environmental protection and she places it in the context of her own culture and values An indigenous Canadian living in the north of the country her culture s way of life is diminishing The Right To Be Cold might not be a book that I agree with in every respect but it s very thought provoking in many waysThis book Could Have Used An Editor As It have used an editor as it many typos and grammatical errors There were also a lot of parts of it that dwelt deeply on the processes of meetings and committees which was rather dry and could have maybe been cut back a bit As a memoir I felt like I got to A History of the Guyanese Working People, 1881-1905 know the cause I got tonow the place but I didn t really get to Blackfrost (Wytch Kings, know Watt Cloutier herself on theind of level that would really tell her personal story in connection to her activism Still as a memoir there are many well written moments Her descriptions of people and of the Arctic are beautiful and her writing is clear and passionate I think if it had been revised and maybe focused a bit too I would have appreciated it All in all The Right To Be Cold is a decent book with a straightforward message and could serve perhaps as a good introductory book in looking at indigenous land rights and social activism It won t be a book for everyone but it s still worth taking a look Lism intervened in this world and in her life in often violent ways and she traces her path from Nunavik to Nova Scotia where she was sent at the age of ten to live with a family that was not her own; to a residential school in Churchill Manitoba; and back to her hometown to work as an interpreter and student counselor  The Right to Be Cold is at once the intimate coming of age story of a remarkable woman a deeply informed look at the life and culture of an Indigenous community reeling from a colonial history and now threatened by climate change and a stirring account of an activist’s powerful efforts to safeguard Inuit culture the Arctic and the planet.

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Vist Sheila Watt Cloutier has spent her career pointing out that her people are at the forefront of experiencing negative changes to our planet s health and as she explains in The Right To Be Cold as goes the Arctic so go we all what could be important to read Without a stable safe climate people cannot exercise their economic social or cultural rights For Inuit as for all of us this is what I call the right to be cold And this is what I have been fighting for over the last twenty years of my life s work The Right To Be Cold is Watt Cloutier s memoir and is interesting at both the personal level she describes a loving childhood playing on the tundra and joining in her people s traditional ways and on a professional level as Watt Cloutier was chosen as a potential leader in her youth and sent away for a southern education she was prepared to write and speak and act on behalf of her people in the ways that we southeners expect to interact when the opportunities arose I see some reviewers found the endless acronyms of international agencies dates names and conferences to be dull or confusing but I appreciate that Watt Cloutier was thorough in this history and as she seems to be using this book as an opportunity to thank the people who helped her and spread out the accolades that she personally received that s understandable What I found most interesting After years of being involved with health care in her home community and education from her marital home base of Montreal Watt Cloutier eventually got involved with the Inuit Circumpolar Council an NGO that represents the interests of the Inuit from Canada Alaska Siberia and Greenland and through them attempted to discontinue the use of POPs Persistent Organic Pollutants throughout the world She had learned that these pollutants evaporate in warm climates and after travelling through the jet streams eventually condense at the poles toxins found in POPs were discovered in Inuit mothers breast milk and in their infants cord blood Yet when she tried to raise the alarm about POPs at international conferences she was met with resistance from African delegates How do you compare the health issues of 160000 worldwide Inuit to the millions of African babies who are saved from death by malaria every year by spraying for mosuitoes with DDT Watt Cloutier eventually made it clear that this isn t eitheror as goes the Arctic so go we all and by putting a human face on environmentalism she eventually got her treaty by which developing countries weren t bound and which the US refused to sign When Watt Cloutier was approached by Earth Justice and the Center for International Environmental Law and asked if she would be interested in launching an international human rights case linking climate change to her people s right to be cold she was ready to enter a new phase in her career Not only was she seeing the devastating tangible effects of global warming in the Arctic the permafrost was melting causing roads and buildings to buckle reduced sea ice changed the migratory habits of the animals that Inuit harvest elders could no longer read the clouds and warn of incoming storms but Watt Cloutier makes the case that hunting and living on the land are fundamental to who the Inuit are as a people climate change was as much about cultural devastation as environmental Ultimately Watt Cloutier was co nominated for the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize along with Al Gore for her work on climate change and while she was severed from Gore before his win she was delighted by the media attention that the nomination garnered for the cause Science is a body of Stupid men jokes knowledge and a way ofnowing based on rigorous observation By this definition the hunters who criss cross the ice and snow and embody centuries of observation are scientists When they describe what is happening to their landscape the world needs to listen By far the most resistance Watt Cloutier has experienced has been from white men from warm countries and not only from those who run the endless backroom negotiations at international conferences but also well meaning and misguided activists Greenpeace supports the Inuit s right to a clean environment but protest their sustainable and culturally imperative seal hunt The Sea Shepherds attempted to block Watt Cloutier from receiving an environmental award because of her people s sustainable and culturally imperative whaling activities Not only could Al Gore s people not sueeze in even a phone call between Watt Cloutier and her co nominee for The Nobel Peace Prize But Nobel Peace Prize but McCartney never responded to her invitation to have him come north and witness in person the seal harvest that he maligns Activists have recently prompted the US government to put the polar bear on the endangered species list and not only did that collapse the Inuit guidehunting industry but according to the Inuit themselves polar bear numbers are steady and not in declineThe most interesting issue facing the Inuit today is that of resource extraction As the ice melts and the northern waters become navigable there s the ice melts and the northern waters become navigable there s potential resource boom in store for the region s indigenous people Watt Cloutier is very aware of the potential hypocrisy of her long having represented her people as victims of the fossil fuel industry just as they who have otherwise lost the ability to sustain themselves through traditional means are about to benefit greatly from this same industry While Watt Cloutier doesn t disparage those who might seek this ind of prosperity she believes that the only viable way forward is to continue to battle for the right to be cold to attempt to return the Arctic to the conditions that would allow her own grandson to learn the wisdom patience and courage that a traditional hunting trip imparts from elders to youth I have no idea if those days are gone foreverIt s easy for us southeners to say Well the Inuit will need to move down to the cities "or Those Uros will need to move off of Lake Titicaca after all humankind has always been mobile and "Those Uros will need to move off of Lake Titicaca after all humankind has always been mobile and in the face of changing climate we survived the ice ages right But Watt Cloutier really impresses on the point that there is value and spirituality inherent in a traditional way of life that the foods her people harvest nourish than the body that they should have the right to express their traditional ways As she so impressed me with the human face of this issue I can t fault that conclusionIf the theme of this year s Canada Reads contest was The book Canada needs right now I have no idea how The Right To Be Cold didn t win 35 only because the later part has SO MUCH detail it is overwhelming to the general readerThe Right To Be Cold is Sheila Watt Clouier s biography concentrating on her life s work to protect the Inuit culture and the Arctic She is inspiring and courageousShe shares her story of growing up in Nunavik learning her people s traditional way of life hunting and preparing country food Young people were taught how to survive in the harsh climate Igloos were stronger than tents and offered protection from both weather and polar bears Sled dogs were smart and capable and reliableThen she was sent to th. Only to find her native land giving way to the inexorable warming of the planet She decides to take a stand against its destruction The Right to Be Cold is the human story of life on the front lines of climate change told by a woman who rose from humble beginnings to become one of the most influential Indigenous environmental cultural and human rights advocates in the world Raised by a single mother and grandmother in the small community of Kuujjua uebec Watt Cloutier describes life in the traditional ice based hunting culture of an Inuit community and reveals how Indigenous life human rights and the threat of climate change are inextricably linked Colonia. 35 starsSheila Watt Cloutier was born in a Northern uebec Inuit community and raised by her mother and her grandmother She was sent away to school in Churchill and mostly enjoyed her time there She later married had ids and went back and forth between her home in Northern uebec and the southern part of the province Eventually she would become an activist she is most commonly associated with environmental activism but really she is an activist for her Inuit culture for education and health care and yes for the environment and climate change and how it is currently affecting the Inuit culture and lifestyle They are seeing the effects of climate change now and they feel that they deserve the right to be cold they need that cold in order to sustain their traditional culture This was good I expected of the environmental aspect in the book and a lot of that did come in the 2nd half but actually ended up enjoying the biographical part of the book best Much of the 2nd half of the book included her travels to various conferences and counsels to tell the story of the Inuit to put a human face on the environmental crisis in the Arctic Surprising to me I just didn t find that part as interesting Overall though I liked it While there is some very important information in this book that Canadians and the rest of the world need to be made aware of the delivery fails The book is tedious to read filled with names of people and committee meetings that could and should have been edited out Watt Cloutier is extremely repetitive and should have hired a ghost writer This is not a well written book thus it was a slog to get through In The Right to be Cold Sheila Watt Cloutier recalls her childhood in the Canadian Arctic and her fight against the threat of climate change as an adult The author takes us through her travels to Nova Scotia and Ontario at a young age as well as her time in a residential vocational school in Churchill Manitoba During her years away from home she had lost a great deal of her culture it would be years before she was again fluent in her mother tongue and when she returned home it would be a different community than the one she had leftWatt Cloutier tells of her battles with the KSB Kuujjua School Board as a member of an independent task force charged with improving the education system As her career developed she took a position with Inuit Circumpolar Council where she began her fight to recognize climate change as a human rights issue rather than a political or economical issue The way she explains it is that basically the Arctic acts as a sort of giant petri dish for POPs persistent organic pollutants As the industrialized world to the south releases and pollutants into the atmosphere as the chemicals evaporate they settle into colder climates to the north In turn this contaminates the air the animals food source and the water Before this was discovered the lack of industry in the North led to the common belief that the Arctic is a pristine and unaffected ecosystem but all the pollution from the industrialized south from which the Northern community receives no direct economic benefit has turned their environment into a toxic depositoryAnother topic discussed albeit briefly is the residential school system Canada s a great country right We re often portrayed as harmless hockey fanatics who just can t stop apologizing to everyone even if we did nothing wrong That s why it is so shocking to look into our past and see a pretty brutal and often overlooked era in our nation s history The mistreatment of our indigenous population is something I had only recently been made vaguely aware of and I can guarantee you it is something I was not taught in school side note Canada did offer a formal apology in 2008 Sheila s own experiences in the residential school system while upsetting were a walk in the park compared to those suffered by the students at the ones run by Christian missionaries something she seems to feel a lot of guilt overMuch of the information in here is unsettling to say the least and for that reason alone I believe this to be an important book It s easy to stick your head in the sand and ignore the unsavory aspects of our great country but Canadians should be made aware of their history warts and all Otherwise we risk marginalizing the very real struggles of those who have had their culture and rights swept under the rug I am obsessed with all things Arctic I am fascinated by the land the climate the culture and the history of the Inuit Mostly I haunt social media sites to discover what it s like to live in the extreme north I even have Kugluktuk and Rankin Inlet Nunavut saved as favorites in the Weather Channel app so I can give my non interested husband nightly updates on the weather conditions It s currently 9 degrees in Kugluktuk and 18 degrees Farenheit in Rankin Inlet a regular heat wave for Arctic winter You re welcomeImagine my delight when I spotted this 2015 book new In a sense Inuit Of My Generation Have of my generation have in both the ice age and the space age The modern world arrived slowly in some places in the world and uickly in others But in the Arctic it appeared in a single generation Like everyone I grew up with I have seen ancient traditions give way to southern habits I have seen communities broken apart or transformed dramatically by government policies I have seen Inuit traditional wisdom supplanted by southern programs and institutions And most shockingly like all my fellow Inuit I have seen what seemed permanent begin to melt away When I was in Peru recently I was excited to visit the floating reed islands on Lake Titicaca Having fled across the highlands from the advancing Inca the Uros people took to the water and by ingeniously weaving the widely available reeds into floating blocks people took to the water and by ingeniously weaving the widely available reeds into floating blocks were able to build a homeland that the Inca then grudgingly allowed to them when the Spaniards eventually arrived they also left the Uros to their islands what use are floating reeds to gold hungry Conuistadors The Uros still use totora reeds to build their homes and boats and the young vitamin rich shoots supplement the protein heavy diet provided by the lake this diet and lifestyle are so healthy that our local guide explained that his 101 year old grandmother still plays volleyball weekly I was enchanted to be shown this uniue culture and dismayed to learn that climate change is lowering the water levels on Lake Titicaca and threatening the reeds that literally support a traditional people s way of life What the Inca and Spaniards failed to do we will accomplish with our Humvees and our coalstacks I am someone who rolls my eyes at environmentalism as cause c l bre I won t be lectured by jet setting millionaires like Al Gore or Leonardo DiCaprio but it s a whole different experience to see an Indigenous people people whose ingenuity and wisdom has sustained life where it shouldn t even be possible for countless generations be threatened by circumstances over which they have no control When you put this human face to climate change "the issue becomes less about politics and about people and hopefully "issue becomes less about politics and about people and hopefully action As an Inuit acti. A “courageous and revelatory memoir” Naomi Klein chronicling the life of the leading Indigenous climate change cultural and human rights advocate For the first ten years of her life Sheila Watt Cloutier traveled only by dog team Today there are snow machines than dogs in her native Nunavik a region that is part of the homeland of the Inuit in Canada In Inuktitut the language of Inuit the elders say that the weather is Uggianatu behaving in strange and unexpected ways The Right to Be Cold is Watt Cloutier’s memoir of growing up in the Arctic reaches of uebec during these unsettling times It is the story of an Inuk woman finding her place in the world. ,

The Right to Be Cold

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