“Letters to My Grandchildren” – David Suzuki’s Impassioned Message to Grandchildren Attracts Ryga Award Attention

David Suzuki’s Letters to my Grandchildren was announced as one of 6 finalists for the George Ryga Award for Social Awareness 2016. This award is presented to a B.C. author “for an outstanding book about social issues.” The Ryga award is an annual award in memory of George Ryga, a British Columbian playwright that was and is, to some, the “Father of modern playwriting” in B.C. This award serves to honour his memory by rewarding B.C. authors for meaningful work in the spheres of social awareness and community spirit.

David Suzuki’s personal and heartfelt book includes stories from his life, including the experience of being a father and grandfather. In his book, Suzuki talks openly about aging and death, the responsibilities of being an elder—and being empowered, not discouraged, by these truths. He discusses Canadian and Japanese history with an unmatched passion and curiosity, feeding the reader important details with a keen awareness of social and political issues. He talks, in depth, about what we are doing to the planet and the consequences of our actions. Each anecdote, no matter how serious, ends on a note of hope.

In these inspiring letters to his grandchildren, David Suzuki speaks passionately about their future. He challenges them to speak out and act on their beliefs, explains why sports are important, decries the lack of elders and grandparents in the lives of many people, especially immigrants, and champions the importance of heroes.

The most personal of his books, Letters to My Grandchildren includes stories from Suzuki’s own remarkable lifesuch as how he spent summers harvesting potatoes and celery as a child to make money for his family and why he has always preferred to work in radio rather than TV. He also provides an intimate look at his life as a father and grandfather and writes moving individual letters to each of his six grandchildren,including letters to his two part Haida grandchildren about the importance of their First Nations heritage. And he speaks candidly and eloquently about old age and death.

As he ponders life’s deepest questions and offers up a lifetime of wisdom, Suzuki inspires us all to live with courage, conviction, and passion. (Greystone 2015)

This is a unique collection of thoughts and pieces of advice from one of Canada’s most prominent thinkers and activists. It blends together questions of place, belonging, race, environment, aging, and planning for the future.

Here are a few snippets of what the book holds in store:

“The daily challenge of meeting one’s needs, supporting friends, being honest and sharing, standing up for what one believes – this is life, and to do it without compromising one’s deepest principles is truly heroic. As you enter the grown-up world, who inspires you? Who are your heroes? You are already mine.” (Fame and Heroes)

“What we do or do not do in the coming years to address issues of climate change, habitat destruction and species extinction, overexploitation of resources, toxic pollution, invasive species, and ocean degradation will have little impact on the lives of elders like me, who are in our last years. But what is or is not done will reverberate through your entire lives. You have everything at stake…” (The State of the World)

“Acceptance of aging is part of getting older; some call it wisdom. And when we accept what we are, then we define ourselves and no longer care about how others see us. Believe me, that is totally liberating and gives power to an elder who is speaking.”
(Aging and Death)

David Suzuki is an internationally renowned environmentalist, geneticist, and author and the co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation. You can learn more about who he is and what he does here. You can purchase Letters to My Grandchildren from Greystone Books’ website or at your local bookstore.


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David Suzuki featured in NUVO Magazine

David Suzuki featured in NUVO Magazine

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David Suzuki to Discuss Latest Book at the 39th Annual Powell Street Festival in Vancouver

World-renowned scientist and author David Suzuki will be speaking about his newest book, Letters to My Grandchildren published by Greystone Books, at the 39th Annual Powell Street Festival, which is Canada’s largest festival of Japanese Arts and Culture.

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Watch: David Suzuki Speaks about Indigenous Culture and Our Children’s Future

Dr. David Suzuki, speaks on indigenous cultures and why, in our efforts to sustain an ecosystem that will support our children and grandchildren, we must fight to keep these cultures alive.


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