InStories from the Six Worlds, it is their stories, passed down by word of mouth, that best preserve and present Mi’kmaw culture. For in their tales, the People themselves speak about their world and give us glimpses of how their universe manifests, in all its fascinating otherness.
Mi’kmaw stories have many levels: entertainment, instruction, warnings. They might subtly encode maps of the land’s important resources, or of the wheeling skies at night. Telling stories, Elders wove humour and stark tragedy, terror and beauty, to teach their listeners how to survive. More importantly, they underlined, over and over again, how their listeners, as humans, must conduct themselves.
Their tales resound with the universal themes included in any worldview—Order and Chaos, Courage and Fear, Change, Revenge and Mercy, Death, Rebirth, and Power—yet are powerfully rooted in Mi’kmaw tradition, Mi’kmaw land.
Their voices still speak to us, down the centuries.
Drawing on various sources, Ruth Holmes Whitehead retells the tales in a voice close to that of the original storytellers. This new edition includes an updated design and the original collection of twenty-nine stories.
InStories from the Six Worlds, Mi’kmaw legends are offered to all people whose search for meaning draws them again to the ancient cultures.