Basic Call to Consciousness

May 15th, 2006 | By | Category: 17-4: Reforming Our Schools, Native Style, Media Reviews

CALL TO CONSCIOUSNESS COVERedited by Akwesasne Notes
Native Voices (2005), Summertown, TN
ISBN 1-57067-159-1 – 160 pages
Paperback $11.95

Review by Victoria Beatty

This book is an essential text on human rights that belongs in all libraries.  In 1977, the Haudenosaunee (the traditional leadership of the Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, Mohawk, and Tuscarora Nations) led a group of some 144 representatives from North, Central, and South America to the first international conference of non-governmental organizations on indigenous issues in Geneva, Switzerland.

This continued a tradition begun in 1923, when Haudenosaunee Chief Deskaheh traveled to Geneva to speak to the League of Nations in defense of the rights of his people but was denied by the Secretariat of the League.

The Haudenosaunee and the other representatives met with more success at the 1977 meeting in Geneva. This book is a collection of papers that form the Six Nations’ report to the United Nations.  That historic meeting brought discussion of the human rights of indigenous peoples into the international arena for the first time.

Victoria Beatty is the instruction/distance services librarian at Diné College.  She travels 450 miles to bring library services and instruction to the college’s Arizona centers, from Window Rock to Tuba City.

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