Talking Back to the Indian Act: Critical Readings in Settler Colonial Histories

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University of Toronto Press, Oct 26, 2018 - History - 248 pages
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"Talking Back to the Indian Act: Critical Readings in Settler Colonial Histories is a comprehensive "How To" guide for engaging with primary documents. The intent of this text is to encourage students to develop the skills necessary to converse with the primary sources in more refined and profound ways. As a piece of legislation central to Canada's relationship with Indigenous people and communities and that has undergone many amendments, the Indian Act is uniquely positioned to act as a vehicle for this kind of pedagogical goal. Through analyzing 35 sources pertaining to the Indian Act that address governance, gender, enfranchisement, and land, the authors hope that students develop critical skills related to analyzing primary documents and come away with a much better understanding of this pivotal piece of legislation as well as the dynamics involved in its creation and maintenance. Kelm and Smith have included a diverse set of sources including interviews, debates in the House of Commons on the Indian Act, memoranda, and letters. In their introduction, Kelm and Smith provide background on the Indian Act and then offer two methodologies (one non-indigenous and one indigenous) for thinking historically about the Act: the 5Cs and the 4Rs. The authors have included 7 maps and 14 images to visually contextualize their narrative. Appendix A includes a thoughtful set of questions to stimulate student thinking about how historical sources come to be, how they are formed and what impact they have both at the time they are created and afterwards. Appendix B contains a historical context timeline for the Indian Act."--

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Chapter 1 The 1876 Indian Act
Chapter 2 Governance
Chapter 3 Enfranchisement
Chapter 4 Gender
Chapter 5 Land
Reading Historically
The Indian Act in Historical ContextTimeline

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About the author (2018)

Mary-Ellen Kelm is Canada Research Chair and Professor in the Department of History at Simon Fraser University.

Keith D. Smith teaches in the Departments of Indigenous/Xwulmuxw Studies and History at Vancouver Island University.

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