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Canada, indigenous resistance

Anthony J. Hall


Indigenous peoples have reacted to various forms of colonization and imperialism in Canada with accommodation, adaptation, and resistance. Early on, indigenous resistance to the expropriation of land and the tyranny imposed by European settlers was passive and conciliatory, commonly involving alliances and treaties with the empire-builders themselves. In time, the governments with whom the First Nations held treaties reneged on their promises; indigenous peoples were forced onto reservations and into Indian boarding schools, and poverty, exploitation, and social iniquity plagued the indigenous communities that had managed to survive. Indigenous resistance during the first half of the twentieth century often involved lobbying and other forms of top-down political engagement with the state. With the ascendance of the civil rights movement in the 1950s, however, indigenous organizers became more militant in their demands for civil and treaty rights, and more recalcitrant in their methods. The success of the fur trade in New France was the primary vehicle for the geopolitical emergence of Canada in its original incarnation. The fur trade's viability depended initially on the thick web of commercial, diplomatic, military, and familial ties that allied Indian groups and agents of the French empire in North America. After the British military defeated the French army on the Plains of Abraham ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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