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Collection « Les sciences sociales contemporaines »

The long walk of Canadian native People toward the full conquest
of their rights, freedom and self-determination
. (2006)

Une édition électronique réalisée à partir du document de Marc-Adélard Tremblay et Jules Dufour, The long walk of Canadian native People toward the full conquest of their rights, freedom and self-determination. Kuujjaq, Nunavik, Canada: IPSSAS Siminar 2006, From Monday, May 22 to Friday, June 2, 2006, 32 + 36 pp. [M Marc-Adélard Tremblay, anthropologue, retraité de l’enseignement de l’Université Laval, nous a accordé le 4 janvier 2004 son autorisation de diffuser électroniquement toutes ses oeuvres.]


The long walk of Canadian native People
toward the full conquest of their rights, freedom
and self-determination.


This long walk did not begin at the time of the arrival of the French or the English in Canada, a territory they occupied since immemorial time, but shortly after the middle of the twentieth century. At first, the First Nations perceived themselves as generous and welcoming neighbors, then further on as friends and allies of the one or the other expecting to live harmoniously along side with them. But they disenchanted after the Creation of the Canadian Confederation (1867) upon becoming aware later on that if they had been recognized as founding Peoples it had made little difference in their daily life. The loss of this illusion was accentuated at the time of the setting in place of the tutelage system and the confinement on Reserves with the Indian Act of 1867. It was only shortly after the tabling of the Report of the Hawthorn‑Tremblay Commission (1966-67), the Federal White Paper (1969) and its rejection by the Alberta Chiefs (1970) that Canadian Native Peoples have begun to put in place Native organizations invested with political power and have spread across the country a newly built up pattern of constitutive elements of their cultural identity. The latter was being based on ancestral traditions rather than depending on values and behaviors of the dominant social class. This Amerindian awakening has been accompanied by a sharp attitude change at the Federal level and among some Canadian provinces. Such a new outlook has made possible the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement (1975) - the negotiation of a Native lifeway, a First in Canada -, the Northeastern Quebec Agreement (1978), the inserting into the Canadian Constitution of the acknowledgement of Native rights and their Protection (1982), the establishment of the Royal Commission on Native Peoples (1992) and the setting in place from West to the East of a large number of Negotiating Tables dealing with Native Governance and the establishment of the Nunavut Territory (1999). A synthetic Table will be built to show the main achievements of the last fifty-five years. The Nunavik Inuit will be used as a case study and current dynamics will illustrate the ideological new facets among the non-Natives which have been at the onset of these new orientations. We will reconstruct the different stages which are likely to lead to the establishment of a public government with a wide degree of autonomy within a provincial framework.

Retour au texte de l'auteur: Marc-Adélard Tremblay, anthropologue, retraité de l'Université Laval Dernière mise à jour de cette page le dimanche 10 mars 2019 9:38
Par Jean-Marie Tremblay, sociologue
professeur associé, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi.

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