NORWAY — Norway Memorial Library will host Jason A. Gutekunst, M.A., B.A., on Thursday, October 6, 6:30 to 8 p.m., to present “The Land Looks After Us: Wabanaki History and Healing.”

For thousands of years, the indigenous Wabanaki peoples of Maine lived and communed with these lands. Over the past 500 years, due to disease, war, and colonial policies determined to eradicate their way of life, the Wabanaki population and culture dwindled. Recently, the Wabanaki peoples of Maine have reformed their historical Confederacy and are experiencing a cultural resurgence. After a brief introduction to the Wabanaki, their homeland, and history, this talk will consider some issues of what restoration of Maine’s Wabanaki peoples might mean. It will include challenging notions of myth and history and use the familiar figure of Molly Ockett as a case study. It will also explore how this vision for Maine’s future draws upon traditional modes of religiosity toward healing and reconciliation, and ways to contribute to the process.

Jason Gutekunst grew up in Norway, Maine. After graduating from Oxford Hills High School, he obtained a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Maine at Farmington, an M.A. in Chant Performance from the University of Limerick, Ireland, and an M.A. in Comparative Religion from Miami University in Ohio. His thesis, “Wabanaki Catholics: Ritual Song, Hybridity and Colonial Exchange in 17th-Century New England and New France,” addresses how indigenous Wabanaki peoples of Maine negotiated situations of colonial contact. Gutekunst has taught as an adjunct professor at universities in Maine and Ohio. Since his return to Maine in 2010, he founded Song Hill Farm in Norway, a homestead and eco-lab dedicated to wildlife advocacy and cooperative, sustainable models of engagement.

This program is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Norway Memorial Library at 207-743-5309. The library is located at 258 Main Street, Norway, Maine.

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