To Make Good Canadians: Girl Guiding in Indian Residential Schools
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McCallum, Mary Jane
McCallum, Mary Jane. To Make Good Canadians: Girl Guiding in Indian Residential Schools: A Thesis Submitted to the Committee on Graduate Studies in Partial Fulfilment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. 2001.
Between 1910 and 1970, the Guide movement became active and, indeed, prolific in Indian residential, day, and hostel schools, sanatoriums, reserves and Northern communities throughout Canada. In these contexts, Guiding embraced not only twentieth century youth citizenship training schemes, but also the colonial project of making First Nations and Inuit people good citizens. But ironically, while the Guide programme endeavoured to produce moral, disciplined and patriotic girls who would be prepared to undertake home and civic responsibilities as dutiful mothers and wives, it also encouraged girls to study and imitate 'wild' Indians. This thesis will explore the ways in which Girl Guides prepared girls for citizenship, arguing that the Indian, who signified to Guides authentic adventure, primitive skills and civic duty, was a model for their training. 'Playing Indian' enabled Guides to access these 'authentic' Indian virtues. It also enabled them to deny their roles as proponents of colonialism.
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