Very scarce copy of the true first edition of these Pacific Northwest legends, recorded and retold by the poet, New Woman, and foundational figure in Canadian literature.
Very good plus.
"You know well that the otter has greater wisdom than a man."
The child of an English immigrant and a hereditary chief of the Mohawk, Johnson played on and with the contemporary romanticization of her heritage, performing stage recitations in theatrically adapted versions of Native dress and returning in traditional Victorian English dress for a second act. While some later reception criticized her for exploiting an image palatable to white Canada, Johnson claimed her identity in uncompromising terms, as Ernest Thompson Seton's oft-quoted introduction to her THE SHAGANAPPI reports: "'Never let anyone call me a white woman,' she said. 'There are those who think they pay me a compliment in saying that I am just like a white woman. My aim, my joy, my pride is to sing the glories of my own people.'"
Publication of LEGENDS OF VANCOUVER was organized by Joe Capilano, friend of the author and her source for many of these stories, in order to raise funds for Johnson's medical treatment; she died of breast cancer in 1913. Mourned by the citizens of Vancouver in what was then the city's largest public funeral, her last days were the subject of a chamber opera commissioned by the City Opera of Vancouver a full century later, with libretto by Margaret Atwood, one in a long line of Canadian literary women she continues to influence.
Read more: Strong-Boag & Gerson, Paddling Her Own Canoe: The Times and Texts of E. Pauline Johnson (Tekahionwake).
Vancouver, British Columbia: (Privately printed), 1911. 9'' x 5''. Original brown wrappers with illustration and lettering in slight relief. Text block staple-bound. Brown textured endpapers. Preface by Bernard McEvoy. x, , 89,  pages. Moderate wear and light chipping to wrappers and fore-edge. Minor staple rust.
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