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Roy Russell
Feast: A Gitksan Story
The Gitksan people have practiced holding feasts for countless generations, for hundreds of years, even during the era of assimilation when laws were enacted to stop this tradition, this system has endured. Not all feasts are the same, and what is described in this story may differ from what would happen in other communities up and down the Skeena River. Feasts are dynamic and adapt to each unique situation that may arise. There is no instruction manual on how communities carry out feasts, but there are sacred laws that need to be observed as a sign of respect to the grieving family hosting their feast and to the honored guests who’ll be in attendance. This is a story about feasts, of life, and of how the community of Gitsegukla deals with death. This is a Gitksan Story.