Indigeneity & Children’s & Young Adult Literature

July 30, 2017 @ 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm America/Toronto Timezone
ACW 109 (Accolade West)
4700 Keele St
Toronto, ON M3K 1P3
IRSCL Congress 2017
416-736-2100 ext.60498
Indigeneity & Children’s & Young Adult Literature @ ACW 109 (Accolade West) | Toronto | Ontario | Canada

Open to all York Community

The Organizing Committee of IRSCL Congress 2017, The Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies, and CERLAC (Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean) at York University are pleased to announce a very special roundtable:

Indigeneity & Children’s & Young Adult Literature

Sunday July 30th, 2017, 5:00pm-6:30pm, ACW 109 (Accolade West) The event is open to all delegates and the York community. Book-signing to follow. Books will be available for purchase in Gales Gallery ACW from York University Bookstore.

This roundtable features authors, illustrators, and performers from Indigenous communities within the colonial settler states of Canada and Mexico whose work explores the challenges and affordances of representing Indigenous experience in various media and texts for children and youth, as well as generative tensions in their work between local, national, and international conceptions of Indigeneity. Participants are Christy Jordan-Fenton, Margaret Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton, Drew Hayden Taylor, and Cuauhtémoc Germán Cuaquehua Calixto (Cuauhtémoc Wetzka).

Margaret Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton & Christy Jordan-Fenton
Margaret Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton is Inuvialuk from Banks Island (Western Arctic). She is best known for her stories of attending a far-away residential school in Aklavik, when she was only 8. These stories have been written by her daughter-in-law, Christy Jordan-Fenton in four award winning children’s books, including the best-selling Fatty Legs. At 81, Margaret remains lively, doing more than 100 presentations a year, and creating beautiful traditional handicrafts. Christy Jordan-Fenton is the author of four award winning books about her Inuvialuk mother-in-law Margaret Olemaun Pokiak-Fenton’s time at residential school. She is also a mother, land and water defender, activist, Vital Voices Lead Fellow, and decolonizing advocate who sees the power of storytelling as the greatest tool we have to creative positive social change. She and Margaret do more than 100 presentations a year on residential school history, Inuvialuit culture, decolonizing perspectives, and resilience. Please see additional information at and

Drew Hayden Taylor
Ojibway from Curve Lake First Nation in Ontario, Drew Hayden Taylor has been a humourist; Artistic Director of Canada’s premiere Native theatre company, Native Earth Performing Arts; an award-winning playwright; a journalist/columnist; a short-story writer; a novelist; and a television scriptwriter.

Drew Hayden Taylor has published two collections of plays for young audiences, Toronto at Dreamer’s Rock / Education is Our Right and The Boy in the Treehouse / Girl Who Loved Her Horses. In 2007, Annick Press published his first novel, The Night Wanderer: A Native Gothic Novel, a teen novel about an Ojibway vampire; a graphic novel version appeared in 2013. Most recently, Douglas & McIntyre published a collection of his Native themed science fiction short stories, Take Us To Your Chief And Other Stories. His new play, Crees in the Caribbean, brings his publication total to 30 books.

For more about his theatre, film, and TV productions as well as his books, please see

Cuauhtémoc Germán Cuaquehua Calixto (Cuauhtémoc Wetzka)
Cuauhtémoc Wetzka is a Nahuatl speaker and illustrator from Zongolica, Veracruz, Mexico. He obtained a degree in Graphic Design at the Gestalt University of Design in Xalapa, Veracruz. He currently illustrates and collaborates for a variety of media, including books, magazines, newspapers and cultural projects. His work has been exhibited in Argentina, the Guadalajara Book Fair (2014), Spain, the United States, and the Taipei Book Fair in China (2015). In 2015 Cuauhtémoc obtained first place for the XXV Illustration Catalog of children’s illustration of Contalculta, Mexico. In 2016, he was selected for the Art Contest and Exhibition for Children by Hispanic Artists in Las Vegas and for the 2014-2016 14th edition of The International Biennale in Mexico.

His work appears in Picnic magazine (2012), Visual Beat: The Best Latin American Illustrations (2013) and the V Ibero-American Catalog of Illustration (2014). His work was also selected among the best Latin American illustrations in 2016 with his book Latin
Colors. For some of his illustrations, please see

Indigeneity & Children's Literature Poster