Indigenous Identities and Nation-Building within Canadian Urban Centres: Relevance for Algonquin Nationhood
Decontie, Jeffrey. Indigenous Identities and Nation-Building within Canadian Urban Centres: Relevance for Algonquin Nationhood; A thesis submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Master of Indigenous Governance, Department of Indigenous Studies, University of Winnipeg. Winnipeg, May 2013.
I document and analyze, using a decolonization framework, historical and contemporary understandings of Indigenous identities, focusing primarily on Indigenous Canadian identity in urban centres. I describe the reconstruction of Indigenous identities in urban centres through the maintenance of certain connections to specific places, traditions, and narratives. I deconstruct and compare western and Indigenous understandings of nation and nationalism. I analyze fears of nationalism while concluding that, while diverse Indigenous nations are growing in urban centres, Indigenous nations have more to fear from the Canadian nation-building project than the reverse. Rebuilding Indigenous nationhoods is a form of justice and equality because it develops the opportunity for nations to determine their own futures. I then apply my analysis to the Algonquin Nation in the Ottawa River watershed. My research addresses a significant gap in the body of knowledge by focusing on Indigenous nation-building in urban centres in Canada.
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