The classic first book from one of the world’s best-loved storytellers, Farley Mowat’s unforgettable account of a people driven nearly to extinction by the trespasses of Western culture In 1886, the Ihalmiut people of northern Canada numbered 7,000 souls; by 1946, when twenty-five-year-old Farley Mowat began a two-year stay in the Arctic, their population had dwindled to only forty. Living among them, he observed for the first time a sight that would inspire the rest of his life: the millennia-old migration of the Arctic’s caribou in their teeming multitudes. With the Ihalmiut, Mowat also endured bleak winters, suffered agonizing shortages of food, and witnessed the continual, devastating intrusions of interlopers bent on exploitation. Here, in the first book to exhibit the prodigious literary talent that would produce some of the most memorable books of the next half-century, Mowat chronicles his harrowing experiences.
People of the Deer is the lyrical portrait of a beautiful and endangered society, and a mournful reproach to those who would manipulate and destroy indigenous cultures anywhere in the world. Most of all, it is a tribute to the last People of the Deer, the Ihalmiut, whose calamitous encounter with modern civilization resulted in their tragic decline.