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Visiting With the Ancestors

Athabasca University Press | Campus Alberta Collection


In 2010, five magnificent Blackfoot shirts, now owned by the University of Oxford’s Pitt Rivers Museum, were brought to Alberta to be exhibited at the Glenbow Museum, in Calgary, and the Galt Museum, in Lethbridge. The shirts had not returned to Blackfoot territory since 1841, when officers of the Hudson’s Bay Company acquired them. The shirts were later transported to England, where they had remained ever since.

Exhibiting the shirts at the museums was, however, only one part of the project undertaken by Laura Peers and Alison Brown. Prior to the installation of the exhibits, groups of Blackfoot people—hundreds altogether—participated in special “handling sessions,” in which they were able to touch the shirts and examine them up close. The shirts, some painted with mineral pigments and adorned with porcupine quillwork, others decorated with locks of human and horse hair, took the breath away of those who saw, smelled, and touched them. Long-dormant memories were awakened, and many of the participants described a powerful sense of connection and familiarity with the shirts, which still house the spirit of the ancestors who wore them.

In the pages of this beautifully illustrated volume is the story of an effort to build a bridge between museums and source communities, in hopes of establishing stronger, more sustaining relationships between the two and spurring change in prevailing museum policies. Negotiating the tension between a museum’s institutional protocol and Blackfoot cultural protocol was challenging, but the experience described both by the authors and by Blackfoot contributors to the volume was transformative. Museums seek to preserve objects for posterity. This volume demonstrates that the emotional and spiritual power of objects does not vanish with the death of those who created them. For Blackfoot people today, these shirts are a living presence, one that evokes a sense of continuity and inspires pride in Blackfoot cultural heritage.

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“Perhaps most importantly, Visiting with the Ancestors provides a helpful commentary on current and future practices that may help to breathe new life into discussions about reconciliation and museums.”

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“The book reveals the ways that collaboration is less about knowledge or culture in the abstract and more about bringing people, objects, and knowledge together into a meaningful social process of talking, thinking, sensing, and sharing while respecting cultural boundaries and flowing through the tensions, questions, and contradictions that often arise in such encounters.”

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Laura Peers is interested in the meanings that heritage objects hold for Indigenous peoples today and in relationships between museums and Indigenous peoples. Her publications include Museums and Source Communities (with Alison K. Brown), “Ceremonies of Renewal: Visits, Relationships and Healing in the Museum Space,” and This Is Our Life: Haida Material Heritage and Changing Museum Practice (with Cara Krmpotich).

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Alison K. Brown’s research addresses the ways in which artifacts and photographs can be used to think about colonialism and its legacies. Before joining the Department of Anthropology at the University of Aberdeen in 2005, where she is a senior lecturer and co-director (with Nancy Wachowich) of the Northern Colonialism: Historical Connections, Contemporary Lives program, she was Research Manager for Human History at Glasgow Museums.

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Legacy«

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Legacy

ECW Press


Exploring intergenerational trauma in Indigenous communities — and strategies for healing — with provocative prose and an empathetic approach

Indigenous peoples have shockingly higher rates of addiction, depression, diabetes, and other chronic health conditions than other North Americans. According to the Aboriginal Healing Foundation, these are a result of intergenerational trauma: the unresolved terror, anger, fear, and grief created in Indigenous communities by the painful experiences of colonialism, passed down from generation to generation.

How are we to turn this desperate tide? With passionate argumentation and chillingly clear prose, author and educator Suzanne Methot uses her own and others’ stories to trace the roots of colonial trauma and the mechanisms by which trauma has become intergenerational, and she explores the Indigenous ways of knowing that can lead us toward change.

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“Powerful . . . A deeply empathetic and inspiring work with insights of value to anyone struggling to overcome personal or communal trauma.” — Library Journal

“This book is accessible, relatable, and full of storytelling about real people. It deeply resonates with me as a traditional counsellor, educator, and Indigenous person. Suzanne Methot, a brave Nehiyaw writer and community helper, takes up the challenges of logically explaining a child’s traumatized brain and body and how these impacts continue into adulthood. Methot also explores Indigenous health-care models, proving that Indigenous values provide solutions. This book uncovers the critical need for legislation that moves from creating ‘a renewed relationship’ with Indigenous peoples to creating real structural change.” — Dr. Cyndy Baskin, Mi’kmaq Nation, Associate Professor, School of Social Work, Ryerson University

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Nta’tugwaqanminen - Notre histoire«

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Nta’tugwaqanminen - Notre histoire

Les Presses de l'Université d'Ottawa | Études canadiennes


Nta’tugwaqanminen-Notre histoire présente la vision, la relation à la

terre, l’occupation historique et actuelle du territoire, de

même que les noms de lieux et ce que révèlent ceux-ci

sur l’occupation ancestrale du territoire. 

Il porte sur les traités conclus avec la Couronne

britannique, sur le respect de ces traités par la nation mi'gmaque et le non-respect de ceux-ci par les divers

paliers de gouvernement. Il explore la dépossession

des Mi’gmaqs du Gespe’gewa’gi (Nord du Nouveau-Brunswick

et péninsule gaspésienne) dans la foulée

de la colonisation illégale européenne, puis le développement de la péninsule par

ces colons européens, à leur avantage. Il aborde également la

question des droits et titres des Mi’gmaqs sur leur territoire. 

Nta’tugwaqanminen montre que les Mi’gmaqs du Gespe’gewa’gi occupent ce territoire

depuis toujours, qu’ils en étaient les seuls occupants

avant la colonisation européenne, et qu’ils occupent sans

interruption depuis ce temps. 

Deux voix émergent de cet ouvrage : celle des Mi’gmaqs du Gespe’gewa’gi, et de leurs aînés, qui sont

les narrateurs de leur histoire collective, et celle des

chercheurs qui ont étudié cette histoire, notamment en

menant une enquête toponymique pour découvrir les indicateurs

de mouvements migratoires.

Une coédition avec Fernwood Publishing.

Ce livre est publié en français.

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Nta’tugwaqanminen speaks of the Gespe’gewa’gi Mi’gmaq vision, history, relation to the land, past and present occupation of the territory, as well as their place names and what they reveal in terms of ancient territorial occupation. It speaks of the treaties they agreed to with the British Crown, the respect of these treaties on the part of the Mi’gmaq people and the breach of these by various levels of governments. 

It explores the dispossession the Mi’gmaq of Gespe’gewa’gi (Northern New Brunswick and the Gaspé Peninsula) endured while the European settlers illegally occupied and developed the Gaspé Peninsula to their own advantage and the rights and titles the Mi’gmaq people still have on their lands. 

Nta’tugwaqanminen provides evidence that the Mi’gmaq of the Gespe’gewa’gi have occupied their territory since time immemorial, were its sole occupants prior to European settlement, and occupied it on a continuous basis. 

There are two voices in the book: that of the Mi’gmaq of the Gespe’gewa’gi, including the Elders, as they act as narrators of the collective history, and that of the researchers, who studied this history, including advanced investigation on place names as indicators of migration patterns.

A co-edition with Fernwood Publishing.

This book is published in French.

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La grande histoire de la nation Mi’gmaque

C’est en clair la riche épopée de la nation Mi’gmaque dont le territoire, tenez-vous bien, comprenait la péninsule gaspésienne, une partie du Maine et les quatre provinces de l’Atlantique et l’Île d’Anticosti. Une histoire tellement fertile que le collectif d’auteurs l'a comparée au fait que c’était comme faire entrer un océan dans un verre d’eau.

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Nta’tugwaqanminen, le fruit d’une collaboration entre les Micmacs du Nord du Gespe’gewa’gi, leurs aînés et un groupe d’éminents chercheurs, a pour objectif de se réapproprier leur histoire, tant orale qu’écrite, dans une démarche de réappropriation du savoir.

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Canada and Aboriginal Canada Today - Le Canada et le Canada autochtone aujourd’hui«

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Canada and Aboriginal Canada Today - Le Canada et le Canada autochtone aujourd’hui

University of Ottawa Press | The Symons Medal Series/Collection de la Médaille Symons


Dans la conférence prononcée comme récipiendaire de la médaille Symons en 2013, le très honorable Paul Martin, vingt-et-unième premier ministre du Canada, s’appuie sur tout le savoir et le vécu de sa remarquable carrière publique, afin d’expliquer le défi d’obtenir justice pour les peuples autochtones du Canada. Se penchant sur les racines historiques des enjeux actuels ainsi que les priorités contemporaines, monsieur Martin affirme que le progrès futur des peuples autochtones du Canada dépend de l’atteinte d’une forme de gouvernement autochtone autonome, accompagné d’un financement adéquat. Mais par-dessus tout, il lance un appel éloquent et urgent à l’action : les Canadiens et les Canadiennes doivent faire aujourd’hui preuve du même type d’imagination, de générosité et de courage qu’ont démontré les Pères de la Confédération lors de la Conférence de Charlottetown en 1864.

Le Canada et le Canada Autochtone aujourd’hui. Changer le cours de l’histoire est une contribution vitale au débat canadien sur le rôle des peuples autochtones au Canada d’aujourd’hui et de demain. C’est une lecture incontournable pour tous ceux et celles qui veulent mieux connaître les racines historiques des défis actuels et réfléchir sur les questions de justice et d’égalité pour les Autochtones du Canada aujourd’hui.

L’une des distinctions les plus prestigieuses au Canada, la médaille Symons est présentée chaque année par le Centre des arts de la Confédération, l’institution commémorative nationale établie en l’honneur des Pères de la Confédération, à un lauréat ayant contribué de façon exceptionnelle à la société canadienne.

Ce livre est bilingue.

 
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