Update: 2016-01-16 06:29 PM -0500

TIL

Computer Assisted Teaching of English
- Canada

Classics Canada Book 1
Authentic Readings for ESL Students

Clas4.htm
Chapters 07, 08, 09

by Patricia Brock (Dawson College) and Brian John Bushy, Prentice Hall Regents Canada, Scarborough, Ontario: copyright 1995. ISBN 0-13-328972-9

by U Kyaw Tun (UKT) (M.S., I.P.S.T., USA) and staff of Tun Institute of Learning (TIL) . Not for sale. No copyright. Free for everyone. Prepared for students and staff of TIL Research Station, Yangon, MYANMAR :  http://www.tuninst.net , www.romabama.blogspot.com

index.htm | Top
CATE-Canada-indx.htm

Contents of this page

07. Raven and the Whale
-- A West Coast aka Pacific Coast Indian legend
  retold by Ronald Melzack -053
  Text   Glossary   Activities

08. The Magnificent Voyage of Emily Carr - a DRAMA
  -- A play by Jovette Marchessault: translated by Linda Gaboriau -062
  Text   Glossary   Activities

09. The Fire Stealer
-- An Algonquin Indian legend retold by William Toye -075
  Text   Glossary   Activities

 

UKT notes
Theft of Fire

 

Contents of this page

07. Raven and the Whale
-- A West Coast Indian legend retold by Ronald Melzack

(p052begin)

WARM-UP
Look at the picture carefully. This is Raven, a magical being who can transform himself into other animals. He is a creature who likes playing tricks on people and animals. Raven legends come from the many First Nations groups on the west coast of British Columbia.

Scanning Two Different Sources of Information
For this activity, you will scan the texts in Chapter Six and Chapter Seven.
     After you read each question below, quickly scan the two legends. Find the (p052end-p053begin) answers to the questions. You do not need to find any other information as you read. Try to do this activity in less than three minutes.
1. Who is Raven?
2. How is Raven like Glooskap?
3. Where do Glooskap and Raven live?
4. Who are the beautiful women that Glooskap and Raven meet?
5. Where do these beautiful women live?

Think about these questions as you read the story: How does Raven feel about the woman he meets? What does he want to do? How does the woman respond to Raven? Why? What does Raven do? What happens to the woman? Why?

 

Contents of this page

Raven and the Whale

One evening, while the sun was setting, Raven flew along the seashore to watch the ever-changing° colors of the waves. As he scanned the horizon, he caught sight of fountains of water rising up from the distant sea. The water shot up high, foamed and bubbled, and fell back on the sea. Raven was curious and flew toward the sparkling, foaming fountains. Soon he was close enough to see a school° of whales, each whale spouting° a stream of bubbly water.

Raven soared above the whales and, to his surprise, saw a faint glow of light coming from one of the whales each time it opened its mouth. He flew closer to the whale to see where the light came from. Each time the whale's mouth opened, Raven flew a little closer -- the light was mysterious, yet it looked warm and inviting. Just as Raven was inspecting the light, the whale lurched° forward and swallowed him.

Raven looked around. The whale's spine° above him resembled a strong and beautiful roof, and the delicate ribs° formed graceful arches, like the walls of a great house. He listened, and heard the rhythmic beat of the whale's heart. Raven lifted his beak° and walked swiftly toward the light, his wing-cape° swirling behind him. Then he stopped suddenly in astonishment.. In the center of the whale was a softly glowing lamp, and beside the lamp stood the most beautiful girl he had ever seen. The dancing flame-light. made her face glow, and Raven was enchanted°.

The girl looked at Raven and smiled shyly. Raven moved closer. The lamp (p053end-p054begin) flame fluttered ceaselessly° -- it rose and fell, rose and fell. Its dancing light radiated warmth and beauty, and the girl's white teeth dazzled Raven's eyes as he watched her. When he approached a little, Raven saw that the girl was dancing on her toes. Her legs barely moved, while her body and arms swayed slowly in rhythm to the loud beats of the whale's heart. Raven watched her supple°, graceful movements, and noticed that the tips of her toes flowed from a delicate thread that was attached to the whale's beating heart.

Raven was overwhelmed with love for the girl as he watched her dance.

Finally, Raven asked,
"Who are you?"

"I am the whale's spirit,"
said the girl.

"I love you," said Raven.
"Come with me and be my wife."

The girl laughed sweetly, and her laughter echoed through the whale.

"I cannot leave," she said, dancing while she talked.
"The whale and I are one, and I must look after the lamp. It warms us and keeps us alive in the freezing water."

"But you are too beautiful to spend your life inside a whale, dancing every moment, yet never moving anywhere."

"I am the whale's spirit," said the girl,
"and I cannot leave. Besides, I love this lamp, and it makes me happy."

"Then take the lamp with you,"
said Raven.

"No," said the girl.
"The lamp must stay where it is, and you must never touch it."

She smiled at Raven and continued.

"I am pleased to have a friend, and you may stay as long as you wish. But you must never, never touch my lamp."

Raven watched the girl, and a deep sadness overcame him.

"How beautiful she is,"
he thought to himself.

"How graceful and delicate and sweet.
How happy I would be if she became my wife!"

As Raven looked around, he saw an opening above him. It was the whale's spout, and Raven could see the stars when he looked straight through it. Slowly, a plan formed in his mind.

When the whale began to sleep in the still blackness of the night, the girl's dance became slower and sleepier. Her eyelids shut from time to time., and she seemed to sleep even while she danced. Raven waited, watching -- then, the moment her eyes closed, he snatched up° the lamp of life, swept the girl into his arms, and snapped her free from the delicate thread. He dashed toward the spout.

But too late!

The whale suddenly lurched up and thrashed. around. Raven and the girl fell backwards. The lamp flickered°, grew fainter, and died out. Raven held the girl tightly in his arms, but she became smaller and lost her shape. She no longer moved and became tinier° and tinier. (p054end-p055begin)

"Come bock to me!" he called.
"I will make you my wife and look after you as long as you live."

But Raven heard only the sea waves swirling around him as the girl vanished into nothingness.

The whale suddenly stopped moving. Raven looked up and saw the sky through the whale's spout. He lowered his beak and flew up, and in a moment he was high above the whale. It was dead, and had washed up on shore. Raven flew down to the shore, sat on a rock, and looked at the whale.

"How beautiful is the spirit of a whale,"
he whispered to himself.

White-capped° waves rushed up on shore. The salty mist made Raven's eyes smart°, and tears rolled down his face as he stared at the whale. He watched it for many hours as it rocked gently back and forth with the inrushing and outgoing tide.

Contents of this page

GLOSSARY

* ever-changing (adj)
  -- always different *
* a school (of whales) (n)
  -- a large group of one kind of fish or certain sea animals swimming together
* spouting (adj)
  -- throwing liquid or liquid coming out in a forceful stream from a spout or opening
* lurched (v)
  -- moved in an irregular and sudden way
* spine (n)
  -- the row of bones down the centre of the back of humans and some animals
* ribs (n)
  -- the 12 pairs of bones running around the chest of humans or animals,
  from the spine to where they join at the front
* beak (n)
  -- the hard, horny mouth of a bird
* wing-cape (n)
  -- Raven's wings or the limbs by which a bird flies;
  the wings look like a cape, a loose outer garment
  without sleeves that is fastened at the neck and
  hangs from the shoulder
* astonishment (n)
  -- great surprise or wonder
* flame-light (n)
  -- a bright, strong, burning light from a candle
* enchanted (adj)
  -- filled with delight (p055end-p056begin)
* ceaselessly (adv)
  -- unending; continuously; without stopping
* supple (adj)
  -- bending or moving easily, especially in the joints of the body
* from time to time (exp)
  -- occasionally; now and again
* snatched up (v)
  -- got hold of hastily and forcefully
* dashed (v)
  -- ran quickly and suddenly
* thrashed (v)
  -- moved wildly about
* flickered (v)
  -- burned or moved unsteadily
* tinier (adj)
  -- much smaller
* white-capped (adj)
  -- a whitish mass of bubbles or foam on the surface or the top of ocean waves
* smart (adj)
  -- to cause or feel a painful stinging sensation, usually not lasting long

There may be other words and expressions in the story that are not familiar to you. Write each one in your journal. Then look it up in a dictionary, ask another student, or ask the teacher for a definition. Write the definition on the line beside the word or expression. Try to use the new word or expression in a sentence.

Contents of this page

ACTIVITIES

READING ACTIVITY

Guess the Meaning of Words from Context
Following is a list of words from the text. Choose an appropriate word or expression for each blank in the sentences below. You will not use all the words. Discuss the answers with the teacher and other students.

UKT 141117: Never use letters of alphabet for numbering, and never use "half brackets" and "full brackets" because they have definite meanings in Linguistics.

01. fountains.  02. lamp, 03. ribs, 
04. a school, 05. the sea, 06. spine,
07. spirit, 08. spout, 09. the stars,
10. thread, 11. toes, 12. wife (p056end-p057begin)

Fill in the blanks:

1. The whale's __________ were like the walls of a house.
2. One day while flying, Raven saw __________ of water.
3. A __________ was attached to the whale's heart.
4. The light in the whale came from a __________ .
5. The girl was the whale's __________ .
6. Raven could see __________ through the whale's spout.
7. The girl would dance on her __________ .
8. The Raven wanted the girl to be his __________ .

 

LISTENING ACTIVITY

Raven Legends
First, listen to the text. Second, listen and write T in your journal if the sentence is true according to the text, F if the sentence is false according to the text, and DS if the text doesn't say. Third, listen to the text and complete the activity. Discuss the answers with the teacher and other students.
1. Raven legends come from British Columbia.
2. Canoes were used for exploring.
3. Canoes are painted by women.
4. The totem pole was never placed near water.
5. Families made their own totem poles
6. The First Nations population of British Columbia is 70 000.

 

DISCUSSION AND WRITING ACTIVITIES

Create a Legend
Imagine that the sentences below are the beginning of your own legend. Create and develop the middle and the end of it. Share your legend with the teacher and other students.
   One evening, while the sun was setting, I walked along the seashore to watch the ever-changing colours of the waves. As I scanned the sand, the rocks and the sea, I caught sight of X. I was curious and walked toward it. Soon I was close enough to see. ... (p057end-p058 begin)

Fish Stories
A "fish story" is like a tall tale or a wildly exaggerated story. In your own words, talk or write about one of the following "fish stories":
 • a whale that swallowed a person whole, such as Jonah or Pinocchio
 • a fish that swallowed a treasure, such as a ring or money
 • a person who struggled to catch a big fish and finally caught it
 • a person who tried to catch a fish but didn't succeed

Whale Watching
Some companies organize trips for people to go "whale watching," so that they can see a school of whales in its natural habitat. Inquire at a travel agency, a tourist information centre, or a marine biology institution to discover if there are whale watches in your area. If so, find out as much information about them as possible.

Beached Whales
From time to time, whales swim out of the water, land on a beach, and die. People often try to get them back in the water, but they do not always succeed. Investigate this phenomenon and try to find out as much information as possible about why whales do this, and how people can help to save beached whales.

Information About Whales
Write a letter to one of these organizations: World Wildlife Fund Canada, Environment Canada, or the National Geographic Society. Your teacher will provide you with the addresses and postal codes.

Ask the organization for information about whales in Canada and North America. When you receive the information, read it carefully. Did you learn any other facts about whales? What are they?

Northwest Coast First Nations
The Northwest Coast peoples lived diverse lives, based on the resources of the sea. Their culture presents many powerful images: tall totem poles, great war canoes, and great feasts called potlatches. Yet these images can only begin to describe the rich variety of their cultures.

Choose one of these groups of Northwest Coast First Nations (p058end-p059begin) :
1. Bella Coola, 2. Coast Salish, 3. Haida,
4. Haisla, 5. Kwakiutl, 6. Nootka,
7. Tlingit, or 8. Tsimshian.

Find out some information about the group, such as its history, territory, language, food, shelter, clothing, transportation, social and political organization, religion, art and leisure, or contemporary life.

Talk or write about the First Nations people that you have researched. In your
opinion, what is the most interesting aspect of their culture ?

 

LIBRARY BOOKS

If you would like to read other works by Ronald Melzack, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

Raven, Creator of the World
Ronald Melzack (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1970). A collection of Raven stories, including "Raven and the Whale." Written for young adults with illustrations by Laszlo Gal.

The Day Tuk Became a Hunter and Other Eskimo Stories
Ronald Melzock (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1967). A collection of legends written for young adults. Illustrated by Carol Jones.

Why the Man in the Moon Is Happy and Other Eskimo Creation Stories
Ronald Melzock
(Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1977). A collection of legends written for young adults. Illustrated by Laszlo Gal.

If you would like to read more legends about Raven, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

How Raven Freed the Moon
Anne Cameron (Maderia Park, British Columbia: Harbour, 1985). A First Nations legend retold for young adults, with illustrations by Taro Miller. (p059end-p060begin)

Raven Steals the Light
Robert Bringhurst and Bill Reid (Vancouver: Douglos & McIntyre, 1988). Haido Raven legends written for adults. Illustrated by Bill Reid.

Sketko the Raven
Robert Ayre (Toronto: Macmillan, 1961 ). A collection of Raven legends. Illustrated by Philip Surrey.

If you would like to read works of related interest, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

Birds of Canada
W. Earl Godfrey (Ottawa: National Museum of Canada, 1986). A very large and detailed guide to birds that are native to Canada. Illustrated by John A. Crosby and S. D. MacDonald.

Houses of Wood
Bonnie Shemie (Montreal: Tundra, 1992). An illustrated look at the traditional First Nations dwellings of the Northwest Coast. (p060end)

Contents of this page

08. The Magnificent Voyage of Emily Carr
-- A play (drama) by Jovette Marchessault: translated by Linda Gaboriau

(p061begin)

WARM-UP
Look at the picture carefully. This is Emily Carr. She is a famous Canadian. Do you know why she is famous? Have you ever seen any of her work? Tell the class about it.

Scanning for Specific Information
Sometimes we scan a piece of writing to find a few facts. We don't read everything. We don't even need to get a general idea about the piece of writing. We need only the specific pieces of information. We do this by reading very quickly. (p061end-p062begin)

In this activity, you will try to answer the questions below by scanning the brief biography of Emily Carr. Try to answer each question in ten seconds or less.

1. Where and when was Emily Carr born?
2. In which countries did she study art?
3. Which objects did she begin to paint in her 30s?
4. Where did she go in 1927?
5. Who did she meet?
6. Which painter encouraged her ?
7. What was the name of her first book?

Biography
Emily Carr was born in Victoria, British Columbia, in 1871. She studied art in the United States and England. In her 30s, she began painting the villages and totem poles of Northwest Coast First Nations. Although these paintings are recognized as some of the finest examples of Canadian art, they were largely ignored at the time. In 1913, she was forced to open up a boarding house in order to support herself.

Serious recognition of Carr's work did not take place until 1927, when some of her paintings were exhibited at a national show in Ottawa. It was at this point in her life that she first met Lawren Harris and other members of the Group of Seven. Their encouragement and support helped bring her talent into the public eye.

In 1937, Carr suffered a severe heart attack. Her health continued to decline in the years that followed, and the artist turned increasingly to writing as a means of artistic expression. Her first book, Klee Wyck, dealt with her experiences visiting First Nations villages. Published in 1941, the work received a Governor General's Award for non-fiction. Other books followed, including Growing Pains, published in 1946, a year after her death.

Introduction to the Play
Here are two scenes from a play about the life of Emily Carr. In the first scene, Emily Carr is still a young but talented painter. She "talks" to a painting by A. Y. Jackson, a famous member of the Group of Seven. In the second scene, she talks to Lawren Harris, another member of the Group of Seven, who recognizes her talent and encourages her.

It is important to remember that two of the three characters in the play are artists. They are talking about works of art, and the language they use is "artistic." (p062end-p063begin)

Think about these questions as you read the scenes from the play: What are Emily Carr's feelings in the first scene? What are her feelings at the end of the second scene?

 

Contents of this page

The Magnificent Voyage of Emily Carr

(Scene 1). The Group of Seven studio in Toronto. A place where the artists meet, work and exhibit. There are several canvases hanging on the wall; they are relatively small and signed Jackson. EMILY goes over to the paintings and studies them attentively, with true enjoyment.

EMILY (speaking to the paintings) I'm particularly fond of your snow scenes of Quebec, Mr. Jackson.
JACKSON PAINTING That's very kind of you. Are you a connoisseur., Mrs. ...?
EMILY Carr, Emily Carr.
JACKSON
PAINTING
Oh, yes! Emile Carr, the West Coast painter. Your husband is quite talented, Mrs. Carr.
EMILY I am the painter! And I'm nobody's wife.
JACKSON
PAINTING
(astonished} A woman painter?
EMILY A man painter and a woman painter -- that makes a pair!
JACKSON
PAINTING
You never know what to expect with women. And when you do, it's even worse! (He laughs, EMILY is furious.)

 

(Scene 2). EMILY CARR takes a sketch pad°, a piece of charcoal and prepares to do a drawing, a sketch of the totem poles. ... LAWREN HARRIS enters with a painting under his arm. His face lights up when he sees Emily.

HARRIS Emily Carr! I am Lowren Harris, from the Group of Seven. I like your work -- I am struck° by its power and inspiration°. Every (p063end-p064begin)
  time I look at your paintings, they cleanse my eyes and my heart, they make me want to paint, they make me want to outdo myself! (solemn, with emotion) Emily Carr, you are one of us.
EMILY (visibly moved) I'll never forget what you just said.
HARRIS What do you think of Jackson's paintings?
EMILY Whenever I look at Mr. Jackson's paintings, the same thought springs to mind°: this painter does not come from the West Coast.
HARRIS The vast° spaces of your land do not inhabit his paintings.
EMILY He doesn't paint the giant trees that reveal all the forces of the Earth, nor does he paint the rolling clouds, or our rivers that swell with the rains and hurl° salmon into the azure° skies!
HARRIS Your mountains that tower over everything, with their slopes° glazed like Chinese pottery°!
EMILY Everything Mr. Jackson paints is very small. But his paintings are better than mine. He takes liberties I would never dream of.
HARRIS But when I compare your paintings with his, to me it is obvious that yours have something his are lacking°.
EMILY Love for the people and for this country.
HARRIS That's exactly what it is -- your paintings are full of love, and beauty!
EMILY If I put love and beauty into my work, it's probably because I feel pity for this beauty which must die.
HARRIS Does beauty die because that is the law of all matter, or because of the way we paint it? (beat) Love plus beauty, plus pity -- that's the closest we can come to a definition of art.
EMILY Art should not be defined. It is made of vitality and youth and it can only die by accident. There is no law of death or decrepitude° for Art!
HARRIS I want to show you my most recent painting. I need to know your opinion of it.
EMILY (touched and a bit amazed to be asked for her opinion) My opinion? (She looks at the painting.) It is incredibly powerful! Does it have a title?
HARRIS (very moved by EMILY's admiration) "Above Lake Superior."
EMILY My eyes have always longed to gaze° upon a painting like that. (p064end-p065begin)
HARRIS What do you think of it?
EMILY I think this painting is the accomplished fruit of an inner effort.
HARRIS Emily, the first time I laid eyes on your work, I thought it was beyond anything I had ever seen before. Your paintings are permeated° with life. You paint images! Bursts of light! It feels as if you submit your entire being to the power of colour. The way you paint the Amerindian totem poles -- you place them on a pedestal of phosphorescence°, between two wings of light. Even if they come from the ancient soul of humanity, your paintings have such incredible youth!
EMILY (She looks for somewhere to sit because she feels dizzy.) Help me.
HARRIS (worried, he takes her in his arms) Do you feel ill?
EMILY (she bursts out laughing) I've never felt better in my life! In the last few minutes, I've heard more stimulating things than I've heard in over fifty years in Victoria. (She steps back.)
HARRIS (he raises his arms, his hands outstretched) Let's salute the energy of true encounters° !
EMILY Let's salute the Group of Seven! The revolution! The public's incomprehension and the conservative critics' insults will be our crowning glory°.
HARRIS The materialistic 20th Century follows the straight and narrow°. Fortunately the winding, sometimes tortuous° routes are those of the artists.

 

Contents of this page

GLOSSARY

* connoisseur (n)
  -- a person with a good understanding of a subject, especially art or a matter of taste
* sketch pad (n)
  -- a number of sheets of paper fastened together, used for drawing rough pictures or sketches
* struck (v)
  -- impressed by
* inspiration (n)
  -- (something which causes) an urge to produce good and beautiful things, especially works of art
* springs to mind (exp)
  -- occurs quickly and suddenly in one's thoughts
* vast (adj)
  -- very large and wide; great in size and amount (p065end-p066begin)
* hurl (v)
  -- throw with force
* azure (adj)
  -- bright blue, as of the sky
* slopes (n)
  -- surfaces that lie at angles or in a sloping direction
* pottery (n)
  -- (objects made out of) baked clay
* lacking (adj)
  -- not present; missing
* decrepitude (n)
  -- weakness or bad condition due to old age
* gaze (v)
  -- look steadily for a long or short period of time
* permeated (v)
  -- passed through or into every part of (something)
* phosphorescence (n)
  -- the giving out of light with little or no heat
* encounters (n)
  -- meetings, especially those that are unexpected or dangerous
* crowning glory (exp)
  -- great fame or success; praise or honour
* straight and narrow (exp)
  -- a conservative way of thinking and acting according to the conventions of proper and respectable society
* tortuous (adj) -- twisted; unconventional

Contents of this page

ACTIVITIES

READING ACTIVITY

Inference Questions
Sometimes you can find information in a story that is not stated clearly in the words. You infer the information -- that is, you make a logical guess -- from either what is in the text, or your knowledge of the world, or both.

Try to infer the probable answers to the questions below by looking at the story. Be ready to give your reasons.
1. Why does the Jackson painting think that Emily Carr is the wife of a painter?
2. Why does Lawren Harris like Emily Carr's paintings?
3. How does Emily Carr know that Jackson is not a West Coast painter?
4. How does Emily Carr compare herself to Jackson?
5. Why does Lawren Harris want Emily Carr's opinion of his most recent painting?
6. How does Emily Carr feel about her conversation with Lawren Harris?
7. How do Harris and Carr feel about the life of the public and the life of an artist? (p066end-p067begin)

 

LISTENING ACTIVITY

Interactive Dictation
An interactive dictation is similar to a dictation, but the texts are dictated by students to students.

An interactive dictation is done in pairs. One member of the pair is Student A and the other member is Student B. Student A is the only one who looks at the text marked Student A, and Student B is the only one who looks at the text marked Student B.

Student A takes the first turn. Student A dictates a text on the Group of Seven to Student B. That is, Student A will read the text first, read the text with pauses a second time, and then read the text a third time.

Student B takes the second turn. Student B dictates a text on the life of Tom Thomson to Student A. That is, Student B will read the text three times, following the procedure described for Student A.

In order to correct the interactive dictation, Student A looks at Student B's journal and Student B looks at Student A's journal. Discuss the corrections with the teacher and other students.

STUDENT A

Read to Student B

The Group of Seven was a group of artists who focused mainly on painting landscapes. The original members were Lawren Harris, A. Y. Jackson, Franklin Carmichael, Franz Johnston, Arthur Lismer, J. E. H. MacDonald, and E H. Varley.

All were friends, most having met each other through their work as commercial artists. A strong influence on the group was the work of Tom Thomson, another commercial artist and friend. A lover of the outdoors, he had encouraged the members of the group to explore the possibilities of painting the Canadian landscape. Thomson was never a member of the group, having died three years before its foundation in 1920.

The goal of the Group of Seven was to capture the spirit of Canada in their art. In order to do this, they organized many trips into the Canadian wilderness, sketching and painting nature in its different seasons. Many sketches were either finished or redone in the artists' studios. (p067end-p068begin)

Throughout the group's existence, changes in membership took place. In 1926, Franz Johnston resigned and was replaced by A. J. Casson. In the early 1930s, Edward Holgate and L. L. Fitzgerald were also admitted.

Although it disbanded in 1933, just 13 years after its formation, the Group of Seven remains the most famous group of Canadian painters.

 

STUDENT A

Write in Your Journal

Tom Thomson
Tom Thomson was born in 1887 in rural Ontario. He grew up on a farm with his parents and __________  brothers and sisters. He took his first art lesson in __________  , and got a job as a commercial artist the following __________  with Grip Limited in Toronto. It was at this company __________  he met and became friends with other artists who would __________  day form the Group of Seven.

In 1912, Thomson's career __________  a dramatic change. He travelled to Algonquin Park, sketching and __________  its landscape for the very first time. After returning, he __________  his work to create one of his most famous paintings, " __________  Lake." The painting was bought the following year by the __________  of Ontario. The sale brought Thomson $250 at a __________  when he was earning just 75 cents an hour.

In __________  fall of 1913, Thomson met James MacCallum, a medical doctor __________  a great love of art. MacCallum offered to pay Thomson's __________  for one year so that he could concentrate on his __________  . Thomson accepted and left his job as a commercial artist. __________  the few remaining years of his life, Thomson spent three __________  a year travelling about Algonquin Park. In the winters, he __________  return to Toronto, where he reworked many of his sketches __________  finished paintings.

In 1917, Thomson disappeared while on a canoe __________  . His body was found eight days later. (p068end-p069begin)

 

STUDENT B

Read to Student A

Tom Thomson was born in 1887 in rural Ontario. He grew up on a farm with his parents and eight brothers and sisters. He took his first art lesson in 1906, and got a job as a commercial artist the following year with Grip Limited in Toronto. It was at this company that he met and became friends with other artists who would one day form the Group of Seven.

In 1912, Thomson's career began a dramatic change. He travelled to Algonquin Park, sketching and painting its landscape for the very first time. After returning, he used his work to create one of his most famous paintings, "Northern Lake." The painting was bought the following year by the government of Ontario. The sale brought Thomson $250 at a time when he was earning just 75 cents an hour.

In the fall of 1913, Thomson met James MacCallum, a medical doctor with a great love of art. MacCallum offered to pay Thomson's expenses for one year so that he could concentrate on his art. Thomson accepted and left his job as a commercial artist. During the few remaining years of his life, Thomson spent three seasons a year travelling about Algonquin Park. In the winters, he would return to Toronto, where he reworked many of his sketches into finished paintings.

In 1917, Thomson disappeared while on a canoe trip. His body was found eight days later.

 

STUDENT B

Write in Your Journal

The Group of Seven
The Group of Seven was a group of artists who focused mainly on painting landscapes. The original members were Lawren Harris, A. Y. __________  , Franklin Carmichael, Franz Johnston, Arthur Lismer, J. E. H. __________  , and F. H. Varley.

All were friends, __________  having met each other through their work as __________  artists. A strong influence on the group was the __________  of Tom Thomson, another commercial artist and __________ . A lover of the outdoors, he had __________  the members of (p069end-p070end) the group to explore the possibilities __________  painting the Canadian landscape. Thomson was never a __________  of the group, having died three years before __________  foundation in 1920.

The goal of the Group of __________  was to capture the spirit of Canada __________  their art. In order to do this, they __________  many trips into the Canadian wilderness, sketching and __________  nature in its different seasons. Many sketches were __________  finished or redone in the artists' studios.

Throughout the group's __________  , changes in membership took place. In 1926, Franz Johnston resigned and was replaced A. J. Casson. In the early 1930s, Edward __________  and L. L. Fitzgerald were also admitted.

Although __________  disbanded in 1933, just 13 years after its formation, the Group of Seven remains the most famous group of Canadian painters.

 

DISCUSSION AND WRITING ACTIVITIES

East Coast, West Coast
Find out some information about the people, places, things, animals, and events on the East Coast and the West Coast of Canada. In your opinion, are there more differences or more similarities?

A Definition of Art
In the play, Lawren Harris says that, "Love plus beauty, plus pity -- that's the closest we can come to a definition of art." Emily Carr says, " Art should not be defined." Do you agree with both artists or with neither artist? What is your definition of art?

Your Favourite Canadian Artist
Choose your favourite Canadian artist. Do some research and find out some information about his or her life or work. Then talk or write about your favourite artist with the teacher and other students in the class. You can choose an artist from the list below, or any other Canadian artist whose work you admire.
(p070end-p071begin)

UKT 141124: When you are preparing a list of items or names, always use the alphabetical order. In the list below, the names are in alphabetical order of the family (or second) name.

01. Maurice Cullen, 02. Thomas Davies,
03. Marc-Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté, 04. Lionel LeMoine FitzGerald,
05. John Fraser, 06. Prudence Heward,
07. Edwin Holgate, 08. Paul Kane,
09. Cornelius Krieghoff, 10. William Kurelek,
11. Ozias Leduc, 12. Pegi Nicol MacLeod,
13. David Milne, 14. J.W. Morrice,
15. Jessie Oonark, 16. Paul Peel,
17. Antoine Plamondon, 18. Goodridge Roberts
19. Carl Schaefer, 20. Homer Watson

 

Modern Art
The National Gallery in Ottawa is an art museum for all Canadians and visitors to Canada. It is paid for by the federal government of Canada. In other words, money for the National Gallery comes from the taxes that Canadians pay.

Imagine that the National Gallery has a certain sum of money to spend on a work or works for the modern and contemporary art sections of the museum. The director of the museum is sensitive about public opinion, so she has asked people to express their likes and dislikes and preferences for the work or works that the museurn will buy.

Choose one of the modern or contemporary artists below. Do some research and find out some information about the life of the artist and his or her work. Then talk or write about your choice with the teacher and other students in the class. Write a letter to the director of the National Gallery expressing your likes, dislikes, and preferences. (p071end-p072begin)

01. Paul-Émile Borduas,  02. Bertram Brooker,
03. Alex Colville, 04. Joseph Drapell,
05. Cathie Falk,  06. Betty Goodwin,
07. Kenojuak Ashevak, 08. Dorothy Knowles,
09. John Lyman,  10. Guido Molinari,
11. Alfred Pellan, 12. Christopher Pratt,
13. Mary Pratt, 14. Jean-Paul Riopelle,
15. Jack Shadbolt, 16. Michael Snow,
17. Joyce Wieland

 

LIBRARY BOOKS

If you would like to read other works by Jovette Marchessault, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

The Magnificent Vayage of Emily Carr
(Vancouver: Talonboaks, 1992). The play from which this excerpt was taken. Originally published as Le voyage magnifique d'Emily Carr, this translation is by Linda Gaboriau.

Saga of the Wet Hens
(Vancouver: Talonbooks, 1983). A feminist play for four women. Originally performed in French as La saga des poules mouillées, this translation is by Linda Gaboriau.

Like a Child of the Earth
(Vancouver: Talonbooks, 1988). Originally published in French as Comme une enfant de la terre, this novel was the winner of the 1976 Prix France-Quebec. Translated by Yvonne M. Klein, it is the first volume in Marchessault's autobiographical trilogy, Le crachat solaire. (p072end-p073begin)

Mother of the Grass
(Vancouver: Talonbooks, 19891. The second volume in the author's Le crachat solaire trilogy. Originally published in French as La mere des herbes, this translation is by Yvonne M. Klein.

White Pebbles in the Dark Forests
(Vancouver: Talonbooks, 1990). The final volume in the author's Le crachat solaire trilogy. Originally published in French as Des cailloux blancs pour les forets obscures, this translation is by Yvonne M. Klein.

If you would like to read more about Emily Carr, the Group of Seven, and Tom Thomson, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

The Art of Emily Carr
Doris Shadbolt (Vancouver: Douglas & Mclntyre, 1979). A collection of Carr's work spanning her entire career.

The Best of the Group of Seven
Joan Murray (Edmonton: Hurtig, 1984). A brief collection of some of the artists' best-known works.

The Best of Tom Thomson
Joan Murray (Edmonton: Hurtig, 1986). A brief collection of some of the artist's best-known works.

Emily Carr Omnibus
Emily Carr (Vancouver: Douglas & Mclntyre, 1993). The complete collection of Emily Carr's writings, with an introduction by Doris Shadbolt.

Painters
Kate Taylor (Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 1989). An illustrated book written for young adults concerning the lives and works of Emily Carr, Tom Thomson, William Kurelek, and Norval Morrisseou.
(p073end)

Contents of this page

09. The Fire Stealer
-- An Algonquin Indian legend retold by William Toye

UKT 141125: Stealing Fire for Humanity has been told in many ancient legends. It was perhaps a common occurrence for peoples who were caught in Ice Age and who had to migrate ahead of the glaciers. See my note on Stealing Fire for Humanity

I am not aware of any such story in Myanmarpré perhaps indicating that the ancient inhabitants of Myanmarpré (whoever they were) had evolved locally. Perhaps, it may be in the Pondaung-Ponnya area where fossils of pre-humans have been found. See my notes on
¤ Geography, Geology, Fossils -- geo-indx.htm (link chk 141125)
¤ Prehistory -- prehist-indx.htm (link chk 141125)

(p074begin)

WARM-UP
Look at the picture carefully. This boy has magic powers. He can change himself into a rabbit. He can also do other magic tricks. He can change leaves from green to red, yellow, and orange. This legend is a very old way of explaining how autumn began in Canada.

Skimming
Look over the following questions. Then skim the story. Read only the first sentence of each paragraph. Next, return to the questions below and write answers (p074end-p075begin) to them in no more than five minutes. Do not reread. Write only from memory. Compare your answers with those of another student.

01. Who is Nokomis?
02. Who is Nanabozho?
03. What did people need for heat and cooking?
04. Who brought fire to the world?
05. At what time of the year was Nokomis cold?
06. Where did Nanabozho go?
07. Who was the rabbit?
08. What did Nanabozho take?
09. Who did Nanabozho give it to?
10. How was Nanabozho remembered?

Introduction to the Story
Think about these questions as you read the story: How did Nanabozho change himself into plants and animals ? Why were people frightened of fire ? How did Nanabozho bring fire to his people? How did they learn to use fire properly?

 

Contents of this page

The Fire Stealer

Long ago an Indian boy lived with his grandmother Nokomis. He was the son of the West Wind° and could do many wonderful things. As a hungry baby he once turned himself into a rabbit so that he could eat grass. Nokomis cradled° him in her arms and named him Nanabozho, her little rabbit.

When Nanabozho grew older, he often changed himself into other things. Once, to trick a friend who was looking for him, he raised his arms, closed his eyes, and thought hard about becoming a tree. Soon roots grew out of his feet and burrowed° into the ground.

Then leaves sprang out of his hands. His body turned into white bark, his arms into branches that sprouted more leaves. Nanabozho had turned into a slender birch°.

In those early days the people had no fire to warm them or to cook their food. They were afraid of fire because they had seen lightning strike a tree and send it up in flames. (p075end-p076begin)

The flames spread quickly, and the forest would have burned to the ground if rain had not put out the blaze.

Once a magician went to the underworld° and brought back a fiery torch°. It frightened the people and they would not keep it even for a day. They ordered a young brave° to take it to an old warrior who lived far away and would watch over it. Every so often the brave returned to the warrior's wigwam to steal the torch for himself. But it was always well guarded by the old man and his daughter.

One chilly day in autumn Nanabozho found Nokomis huddled. in her blanket, looking miserable. "I've brought you some deer meat," he said, hoping to cheer her up°. But the raw meat was tough, and Nokomis could eat only a little of it with the few teeth she had left. As Nonabozho watched her, his heart filled with pity. He decided that she needed fire to warm her and to cook her food. He would steal it from the warrior, the guardian of the torch.

Nanabozho set out in his canoe. for the place where the warrior lived. He had to paddle for many days before he caught sight of the warrior's wigwam.

After hiding his canoe in the rushes, he wondered how he could enter the wigwam and steal the torch. An idea occurred to him. "If I change myself into a rabbit," he thought, "the old man's daughter will find me and take me in."

Nanabozho crept towards the wigwam. When he reached the edge of the clearing, he turned himself into a rabbit and hopped closer.

Before long a girl stepped out. She saw the small trembling° animal and picked it up. Crooning° to it and rubbing behind its ears, she carried it inside the lodge°.

The girl's father, who had been sleeping, woke up as she entered. "Where did that rabbit come from?" he growled. "I found him outside," the girl answered. "Good. We'll have rabbit for supper. It will make a tasty meal." He yawned and went back to sleep.

The girl wanted to keep the rabbit as a pet, but she knew better than to disobey her father. With a heavy heart she put the animal near the fire and went to find a knife. Suddenly the rabbit vanished° and an Indian brave stood in its place. The girl was so surprised that she could do nothing but watch as he seized. the torch and dashed from the lodge.

The girl rushed after him. "Come back, you thief!" she cried. "Give us back our fire!"

"Here it is!" yelled Nanabozho and plunged the burning torch into the dry grass. It caught fire and the wind carried the flames and smoke back towards the girl.

The flames rose higher and higher as they spread from one tree to the next. The heat became unbearable. and the girl had to give up the chase. (p076end-p077begin)

Nanabazho fastened the torch to the front of his canoe and departed. As he paddled swiftly away, a wonderful sight met his eyes.

He saw that the fire was casting its light over all the maples and birch trees he passed. They glowed with beautiful fiery colors.

When Nanabozho reached home, Nokomis received the gift of fire joyfully. She basked° in the heat it gave and ate her meat with ease, now that it could be cooked.

The people found that fire warmed them when they were cold and made their food more delicious to eat. They soon lost their fear of it when they learned that if they always watched over fire, and did not touch it, it would do them no harm.

Nanabozho was proud of himself for bringing fire to the Indians and wanted to be remembered for what he had done. When autumn came the next year, he made the woods blaze with flaming colors. "Remember me, Nanabozho!" he shouted as he worked his magic on the trees. "Remember how I brought fire to my people!" His people did remember Nanabozho and his gift. Even today he is not forgotten because every year the frosts of autumn turn green leaves red and gold and bronze and yellow -- the colors of fire.

Contents of this page

GLOSSARY

* West Wind (n)
  -- soft and gentle moving air from the direction of the west;
  in aboriginal legends, the West Wind is a character with supernatural powers
* cradled (v)
  -- held gently as if in a cradle or small bed for a baby
* burrowed (v)
  -- dug a hole
* birch (n)
  -- a tree with smooth wood and thin branches
* underworld (n)
  -- in ancient legends, the place where the spirits of the dead live
* torch (n)
  -- a mass of burning material tied to a stick and carried to give light
* brave (n)
  -- a young North American aboriginal warrior or fighting man
* warrior (n)
  -- a soldier or experienced fighter
* wigwam (n)
  -- a tent of the type used by some North American First Nations (p077end-p078begin)
* huddled (v)
  -- crowded close to someone or something
* cheer her up (exp)
  -- cause (somebody) to become happier or more cheerful
* canoe (n)
  -- a long, light, narrow boat, pointed at both ends, and moved by a paddle held in the hands
* rushes (n)
  -- grasslike water plants whose long thin hollow stems are often dried and made into mats and baskets
* trembling (adj)
  -- shaking uncontrollably, usually from fear or anxiety
* crooning (v)
  -- singing gently in a low soft voice
* lodge (n)
  -- a small house
* vanished (v)
  -- disappeared from sight
* seized (v)
  -- took hold of eagerly and forcefully
* unbearable (adj)
  -- not bearable; too bad to be borne
* basked (v)
  -- sat or lay in enjoyable heat or light

There may be other words and expressions in the story that are not familiar to you. Write each one in your journal. Then look it up in a dictionary, ask another student, or ask the teacher for a definition. Write the definition on the line beside the word or expression. Try to use the new word or expression in a sentence.

Contents of this page

ACTIVITIES

READING ACTIVITY

Make Connections

Scan the text and find the noun or nouns that the italicized pronoun refers to. The noun or nouns may be in the same sentence or somewhere else in the text. Write the answers in your journal and discuss them with the teacher and other students.

UKT note: Because of the possibility of loss of formatting during electronic transmission, I've indicated the pronoun in question by putting between parentheses at the end of the question.

EXAMPLE:  He was the son of the West Wind and could do many wonderful things. (He)
ANSWER:   He is Nanabozho.

1. It frightened the people and they would not keep it even for a day. (It)
2. She saw the small trembling animal and picked it up. (She)
3. He decided that she needed fire to warm her and cook her food. (she)
4. They glowed with beautiful fiery colors. (They) (p078end-p079begin)
5. After hiding his canoe in the rushes, he wondered how he could enter the wigwam and steal the torch. (the first he)
6. It caught fire and the wind carried the flames and smoke back towards the girl. (It)
7. He yawned and went back to sleep. (He)
8. They ordered a young brave to take it to an old warrior who lived far away and would watch over it. (They)

 

LISTENING ACTIVITY

Algonquian Legends

Look at the following list of traditional Algonquian activities. First, listen to the text. Second, listen to the text and indicate in your journal whether the activities were done by men, women, or both men and women. Third, listen to the text and complete the activity. Discuss the answers with the teacher and other students.

1. hunting
2. farming
3. fishing
4. travelling
5. making canoes
6. gathering food
7. living in wigwams
8. caring for children
9. fighting
10. making tools

 

DISCUSSION AND WRITING ACTIVITIES

My Favourite Grandparent
Choose one or more of your own grandparents, or choose a grandparent in a story or a movie. Identify and describe the person so that your listeners or readers have a clear idea of the person and his or her life. Share your stories with the teacher and other students. Which story is the most interesting, in your opinion? Why? (p079end-p080begin)

If I could be an animal, I'd be ...
Imagine that you could change yourself into any animal at all. Of course, you could change back into yourself anytime you wished. Which animal would you like to be? Why? Mention at least three of the animal's qualities that you can identify with. Share your stories and decide who has told or written the most unusual one.

If I could be a tree, I'd be...
Imagine that you could change yourself into any type of tree at all. Of course, you could change back into yourself anytime you wished. Which type of tree would you like to be? Why ? Mention at least three of the tree's qualities that you can identify with. Share your stories and decide who has told or written the most convincing one.

Fire!
the following are four sets of words and expressions related to fire. Choose one set of five words and create your own story about fire. Talk or write about it with the teacher and other students.

1. set on fire, fire alarm, fire department, fire engine, firefighter
2. light a fire, fireplace, firewood, fireguard, fireside
3. firecracker, on fire, fire station, firefighter, fire hydrant
4. firing squad, fire a gun, firearm, under fire, fire escape

Create a Legend
Make up a topic suitable for the creation of a legend. Here are some examples:
 • where day and night came from
 • where the four seasons came from
 • where water came from
 • where air came from
 • where earth came from
 • where fish came from
 • where birds came from
 • where people came from
Discuss these ideas with other students and then write a first draft of the legend. Illustrate it with sketches, if you wish. (p080end-p081begin)

Now read your legend to a group or the class. They may offer suggestions to make the legend and/or the illustrations more interesting. Then correct and complete the first draft of the legend and write a final draft.

First Nations Farmers of Eastern Canada
Choose one of these First Nations groups of Eastern Woodlands Farmers:
1. Cayuga, 2. Erie, 3. Huron, 4. Mohawk,
5. Oneida, 6. Onondaga, 7. Petun, and 8. Seneca.

Find out some information about the group, such as its history, territory, language, food, shelter, clothing, transportation, social and political organization, religion, art and leisure, or contemporary life.

Talk or write about the First Nations people that you have researched. In your opinion, what is the most interesting aspect of their culture ?

 

LIBRARY BOOKS

If you would like to read other works by William Toye, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

The Fire Stealer
(Toronto: Oxford, 1979). This edition is illustrated by Elizabeth Cleaver.

The Loon's Necklace
(Toronto: Oxford, 1977). The retelling of a Tsimshian legend. Illustrated by Elizabeth Cleaver.

The Mountain Goats of Temlaham
(Toronto: Oxford, 1969). Illustrated by Elizabeth Cleaver.

Cartier Discovers the St. Lawrence
(Toronto: Oxford, 1970). A book for young people about the early French explorer Jacques Cartier. Illustrated by Laszlo Gal. (p081end-p082begin)

If you would like to read about Algonquan people and their legends, look for the following books in the class, school, or local library, or in a bookstore.

Tales from the Wigwam
(Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 1989). A collection of traditional tales adapted for young people.

Algonkion Hunters of the Eastern Woodlands
Claudine Goller (Toronto: Grolier, 1984). An illustrated book written for young people.

Algonkions of the Eastern Woodlands
Edward Rodgers (Toronto: Royal Ontario Museum, 1990). An illustrated book written for young people. (p082end)

 

Contents of this page

UKT notes

Stealing Fire for Humanity

-- UKT 141125

UKT 141125: Stealing Fire for Humanity has been told in many ancient legends. It was perhaps a common experience for peoples who were caught in Ice Age and who had to migrate ahead of the glaciers.

I am not aware of any such story in Myanmarpré perhaps indicating that the ancient inhabitants of Myanmarpré (whoever they were) had evolved locally. Perhaps, it may be in the Pondaung-Ponnya area where fossils of pre-humans have been found. See my notes on
¤ Geography, Geology, Fossils -- geo-indx.htm (link chk 141125)
¤ Prehistory -- prehist-indx.htm (link chk 141125)

From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theft_of_fire 141125

The theft of fire for the benefit of humanity is a theme that recurs in many world mythologies. Examples include:

According to the Rig Veda (3:9.5), the hero Mātariśvan recovered fire, which had been hidden from humanity.

In Greek mythology, the Titan Prometheus steals the heavenly fire for humanity, enabling the progress of civilization.

In the Book of Enoch, the fallen angels and Azazel teach early humanity to use tools and fire.

In Polynesian myth, Māui stole fire from the Mudhens. [1]

In Cherokee myth, after Possum and Buzzard had failed to steal fire, Grandmother Spider used her web to sneak into the land of light. She stole fire, hiding it in a clay pot. [2]

Among various Native American tribes of the Pacific Northwest and First Nations, fire was stolen and given to humans by Coyote, Beaver or Dog. [3]

According to some Yukon First Nations people, Crow stole fire from a volcano in the middle of the water. [4]

According to the Creek Native Americans, Rabbit stole fire from the Weasels. [5]

In Algonquin myth, Rabbit stole fire from an old man and his two daughters. [6]

In Ojibwa myth, Nanabozho the hare stole fire and gave it to humans.

UKT 141125: The first time I read about Fire-stealing was in Greek mythology, The Fire-stealer, Prometheus - Titan, was punished by the Greek-gods. Prometheus was punished for being a humanist -- Crime For Humanity. He was tortured by permanent thirst to this day.

You can easily construct a siphon inside a toy human figure representing Prometheus. The siphon is placed inside the toy. It is then placed inside a transparent container which has a hole at the base to let the water out once the siphon starts to work. You fill the container slowly with water. But as soon as the water level goes past the head of the siphon just below the lips of the Prometheus, the siphon drains away the water. The water never reaches the lips of Prometheus.

Go back Stealing-Fire-note-b

Contents of this page

End of TIL file