Harold Johnson is the author of Firewater: How Alcohol Is Killing My People (and Yours) short-listed for 2016 Governor General's Literary Award (non-fiction). Harold is also a Crown Prosecutor in La Ronge, Saskatchewan. He lives with his wife Joan at the northern end of Montreal Lake, where they continue the traditions of trapping and commercial fishing common to Johnson's Cree background. Harold has published five works of fiction. His previous non-fiction work, Two Families: Treaties and Government, examined Canadian constitutionalism from a Cree law perspective.
On February 28 evening, Harold will speak about his book, Firewater: How Alcohol Is Killing My People (and Yours).
A passionate call to action, Firewater examines alcohol—its history, the myths surrounding it, and its devastating impact on Indigenous people.
Drawing on his years of experience as a Crown Prosecutor in Treaty 6 territory, Harold Johnson challenges readers to change the story we tell ourselves about the drink that goes by many names—booze, hooch, spirits, sauce, and the evocative “firewater.” Confronting the harmful stereotype of the “lazy, drunken Indian,” and rejecting medical, social, and psychological explanations of the roots of alcoholism, Johnson cries out for solutions, not diagnoses, and shows how alcoholism continues to kill so many. Provocative, irreverent, and keenly aware of the power of stories, Firewater calls for people to make decisions about their communities and their lives on their own terms.
Powerful testimonials from Richard Van Camp and Tracey Lindberg are included in this book. Written in plain, frank language, Firewater speaks to anyone struggling with addiction.
Tuesday, February 28 2017
Centretown United Church
507 Bank St. Ottawa
organized by Octopus Books
General admission: $10
Advanced tickets are available online or in store at 116 Third Ave. Ottawa
This event is sponsored by Canadian Union of Public Employees, KAIROS Canada, Centretown United Church and University of Regina Press.
Media sponsor: rabble.ca
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Harold Johnson worked as a miner and logger across northern and western Canada, before quitting the mines to pursue a bachelor's degree in law from the University of Saskatchewan and a Master of Law degree from Harvard University. He now works as a Crown Prosecutor in La Ronge, Saskatchewan. He lives with his wife Joan at the northern end of Montreal Lake, where they continue the traditions of trapping and commercial fishing common to Johnson's Cree background.He is the author of Corvus, a novel.
Thank you for reading this story…
More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.
rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.
So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.
And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.