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Jim Northrup

(Born 1943) is an Anishinaabe (Native American) newspaper columnist, poet, performer and political commentator from the Fond du Lac Indian Reservation in Minnesota. His Anishinaabename is "Chibenashi" (from Chi-bineshiinh "Big little-bird").

Northrup's regular column, the Fond du Lac Follies, is syndicated through several Native American papers, such as The Circle, TheNative American Press and News From Indian Country. It has won many awards (see below) and is known for a warm humour with a sharply political undertone. Northrup often tells stories through theperspective of his immediate family, most of whom like himself live a traditional Anishinaabe lifestyle, and uses a folksy style to make points about United States-Native American interactions. Fond du LacFollies was named Best Column at the 1999 Native American Journalists Association convention. In 1990-1992, Jim worked as a roster artist for the COMPAS Writer in the Schools Program. He has been a Mentorin the Loft Inroads Program, a Judge for the Lake Superior Contemporary Writers Series and The Jerome Fellowship, and a Member of the Minnesota State Arts Board Prose Panel. Jim also has given radiocommentaries on the Superior Radio Network, National Public Radio, Fresh Air Radio], and the BBC-Scotland. His two books, Walking the Rez Road and Rez Road Follies, are written in the same style, andhave been highly praised for their insights into reservation life. He peppers his column, and the books, with jokes (e.g. Q: Why is the white man in such a hurry to get to Mars? A: He thinks we haveland there) and words or phrases from his tribal language, Ojibwemowin, of which he is a student.
Born in the Government Hospital on the reservation, Northrup was brought up in an Indian boardingschool, where he was physically abused by teachers and fellow students, Northrup grew up a tough streetfighter with a smart mouth. Service in Vietnam and a surfeit of family tragedy have added to a...
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