Dancing With A Ghost: Exploring Indian Reality by Rupert RossDancing With A Ghost: Exploring Indian Reality by Rupert Ross

Dancing With A Ghost: Exploring Indian Reality

byRupert Ross

Paperback | January 31, 2006

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As a Crown Attorney working with First Nations in remote northwestern Ontario, Rupert Ross learned that he was routinely misinterpreting the behaviour of Aboriginal victims, witnesses, and offenders, both in and out of court. He discovered that he regularly drew wrong conclusions when he encountered witnesses who wouldn’t make eye contact, victims who wouldn’t testify in the presence of the accused, and parents who showed great reluctance to interfere in their children’s offending behaviour. With the assistance of Aboriginal teachers, he began to see that behind such behaviour lay a complex web of coherent cultural commandments that he had never suspected, much less understood.

As his awareness of traditional Native teachings grew, he found that the areas of miscommunication extended well beyond the courtroom, causing cross-cultural misunderstanding—and ill-informed condemnation.

Dancing with a Ghost is Ross’s attempt to give some definition to the cultural gap that bedevils the relationships and distorts the communications between Native peoples and the dominant white Canadian society—and to encourage others to begin their own respectful cross-cultural explorations. As Ross discovered, traditional perspectives have a great deal to offer modern-day Canada, not only in the context of justice but also in terms of the broader concepts of peaceful social organization and personal fulfilment.

RUPERT ROSS is a retired assistant Crown Attorney for the District of Kenora, Ontario. Starting in 1985, he conducted criminal prosecutions for more than twenty remote Ojibway and Cree First Nations communities in northwestern Ontario. His first book, Dancing with a Ghost, started his exploration of aboriginal visions of existence and ...
Title:Dancing With A Ghost: Exploring Indian RealityFormat:PaperbackDimensions:248 pages, 8.23 × 5.19 × 0.67 inPublished:January 31, 2006Publisher:Penguin CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0143054260

ISBN - 13:9780143054269

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from A wonderfully significant , eye-opening book. This book opened my eyes to understanding a traditional native approach to those members of their communities who break community rules and how to deal with them. Our view is that those who break our laws are bad people and must be punished. A historic native view is that people who break their rules are immature and must be counselled on how to improve their personal growth and contribution to their communities. Rupert Ross explains how he, as a crown attorney charged with prosecuting natives who had been charged with crimes under our law, came to understand the weaknesses of our system and the great value of this traditional native approach. Ross presents the ideas in a clear, very readable way, using interesting examples and stories that he has come across in a number of years of prosecuting experience in native reserves in North Western Ontario.
Date published: 2012-09-26