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Windflower (New Canadian Library) Mass Market Paperback – November 1, 1991


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Mass Market Paperback, November 1, 1991
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Product Details

  • Series: New Canadian Library
  • Mass Market Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: McClelland & Stewart Inc (November 1, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0771098790
  • ISBN-13: 978-0771098796
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.4 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,599,673 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English, French (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap

Set against the austere landscape of northern Labrador, Windflower is the poignant story of Elsa Kumachuk, a young Inuit woman torn between two worlds by the birth of her blond-haired, blue-eyed son. Unacknowledged by his father, an American GI, the child is welcomed into the Inuit community with astonishment and delight. Elsa, however, must come to terms with the conflicting values implied by her son's dual heritage.

Gabrielle Roy's last novel, Windflower is both a moving account of one woman's tragic dilemma and a sensitive portrait of a society in transition.


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Carmelo Tropiano on March 16, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Gabrielle Roy paints a portrait of a culture that has been interfered with by the materialist culture of America. The White dominant race has infiltrated the Innuit landscape, and the effects are portrayed at times as having devastating consequences. It is a novel with thoughtful characterizations, and the Innuit are depicted as having a rich culture, which is creative, insightful, and hospitable. However, there is a horrifying context as well. Rape, incest, and abandonment are regular instances in a novel that leans toward a tragic representation of a culture that has been violated in every way. American GI's stationed in this northern landscape during the Vietnam war take liberty with the women of the Innuit culture. Elsa, the main character, is raped by one such GI, a child is born from their violative union. Jimmy, appears as the Saviour of the people. In the end, he tragically forsakes his mother, his homeland, and opts instead for the White culture which ironically forsook him. It is a novel that celebrates purity, and the indictment of the violation of this purity; whether the purity be of a moral, natural, or spiritual order. The violation of such purity is met with a gentle rebuke, but the lasting consequences are tragic, and melancholy. Elsa's eventual abandonment by her son, and the abandonment of herself substantiates this theme. An excellent novel, but be forewarned, the tragic representations leave an indelible impression that is very difficult to release.
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By Catherine on September 9, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Gabrielle Roy the author of the book called "Windflower" is an astonishing but violently and horrifying book about the problems which copes with the Inuit culture and the White dominant race. The American GI's who stationed in the Inuit landscape in northern Labrador during the Vietnam war. It is a novel with thoughtful characterizations, and Inuits have rich culture and hospitable land.
Elsa, the main character who was teenager at that time, likes one of the GI's. In an unexpected situation, rape occurs. A child is born but his appearances seem to be different from the Inuit culture. The child looks like his father, although the mother of the child does not seem to remember what the GI looks like.
She does not care about her heritage as a Inuit but wants to live differently. She wants her child to learn more about his father's society and culture.
In the end Jimmy fore sakes his mother, his home land and it turned out to be true what Elsa wanted for her child to grow up like, to live like the White society. I would say that it is an excellent novel but I think that people are warned to be more careful which ideas to take because we never know where we will end up.
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