Elizabeth Penashue is well known both within and far beyond the Innu Nation. The recipient of a National Aboriginal Achievement Award and an honorary doctorate from Memorial University, she has been a subject of documentary films, books and numerous articles. Her diaries document the spiritual and political life and growth of an Innu woman at a critical time in the history of contact between the Innu and a non-Aboriginal government, her environmental and cultural activism, the community's traditions, history and heritage, as well as observations about the land, plants, animals, weather, dreams, and inside information on the Innu protests against low-level flying, the establishment of reserve status, the Emish (Voisey's Bay) agreement and the development of the Mista-shipu (Lower Churchill River).
Nationally and internationally, there are remarkably few examples of diaries by indigenous people writing in their own languages. The diaries are also of educational value for the new Innu school board in Labrador, in that there are few reading resources by and about Innu. Many of the stories in the diaries are both moving and eloquent. Thus, this work will also make a contribution to indigenous literary writing. The research will also provide new insight into indigenous research methodologies and collaborations, approaches to literary translation of writing in an indigenous language, and educational questions of curriculum and pedagogy in indigenous contexts.