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Le Kitchimanitou, by Michel Noël, illustrated by Diane Boily, Montréal : Hurtubise HMH, 2003

ARCHIVED - Our Voices, Our Stories:
First Nations, Métis and Inuit Stories

Archived Content

This archived Web page remains online for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. This page will not be altered or updated. Web pages that are archived on the Internet are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats of this page on the Contact Us page.

About Our Voices, Our Stories

Contemporary Stories and Aboriginal Oral Tradition

This site features a selection of stories from Aboriginal oral tradition as well as contemporary stories from the collection of Library and Archives Canada (LAC). By including tales from yesterday and today, we hope to highlight the survival and continuity of this oral tradition, and allow visitors to discover the new paths it has taken. Some contemporary tales are quite different from traditional accounts, but they fit into the vast area of storytelling and oral history. The Stories of Here and Now sections also provide an opportunity to highlight and celebrate the work of several distinguished modern Aboriginal authors and organizations.

Selecting the Stories and Preparing the Texts

Although our goal was to cover this topic as broadly as possible, the exhibition cannot cover the complexity and diversity of the subject matter as a whole. For this reason, the selection of the stories involved painstaking efforts and consultation with numerous experts from various Inuit, Métis and First Nations communities. These authors, storytellers, ethnologists, professors, archivists and booksellers were consulted because of their empirical knowledge on the subject, and also for their personal experiences.

Story selection was based on various criteria, including:

  • the popularity of the story;
  • the representative nature of a type of story, such as Creation myths;
  • the reputation of the storyteller or the person who transcribed the story;
  • the attractiveness or special qualities of the medium.

As much as possible, the featured traditional stories were transcribed by Aboriginal authors. Some have also been re-transcribed by non-Aboriginal people to whom the traditional storytellers told the story; these exchanges have sometimes resulted in interpretation or translation errors. As a result, the experts who selected the stories paid special attention to both the choice of story and the person who transcribed it.

We also consulted experts to prepare the texts. Each text was written by an author from the Aboriginal group to which the section is dedicated, and was reviewed by a peer.


LAC expresses its thanks to the many specialists that participated in this project as consultants, namely Renée Hulan, Rita Bouvier, Sherry Facette and Gregory Scofield. LAC also conveys its heartfelt thanks to storytellers Stephen Augustine and Maria Campbell.

The names of the authors of the various texts that appear in Voices of First Nations, Voices of Inuit, and Voices of Métis, are shown at the top of each text.

We also thank the Canadian Museum of Civilization, which allowed us to record the interview with Maria Campbell.

We also gratefully acknowledge the contribution of the Department of Canadian Heritage, whose financial assistance through the Canadian Culture Online Program made this work possible.