People who identify themselves as 'Aboriginal' range from dark-skinned, broad-nosed to blonde-haired, blue-eyed people. This paper was initially written for the What I Learned in Class Today project. There are many who are not satisfied by the three-part definition of Aboriginal identity. Users who like Understanding Aboriginal Identity, Users who reposted Understanding Aboriginal Identity, Playlists containing Understanding Aboriginal Identity, More tracks like Understanding Aboriginal Identity. Colonialism brought dispossession, and comingling between different clans occurred as a result. Some students consider themselves “allies,” while other students may find themselves personally or socially challenged by the issues, and that can result in resistance to the discussion. 105-119, and our sections on the Indian Act and the residential school system. It is important, however, to understand that the Indian Act has produced powerful discourses of Aboriginal identity that have deeply affected Aboriginal people and communities because they have been exercised through Canadian law and have had very real consequences for Aboriginal people’s lived realities. An individual must prove Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent.
The Indian Act…is much more than a body of laws that for over a century has controlled every aspect of status Indian life. For those unfamiliar with this history, we suggest reviewing this material, as it may assist you in developing ways to reframe problematic positions or arguments you may encounter in classrooms. Email: email@example.com. The logic of Indian status flows from thinking of Indigeneity (or ethnicity more broadly) as something that can be quantifiably measured and expressed in concepts such as “blood quantum.” “Blood quantum” in this case refers to the degree of “Nativeness” a person possesses expressed as a percentage. The Indian Act and by extension Indian status is “virtually the only concrete indicator of the special relationship that exists between Aboriginal peoples and the Canadian government” (222) and the dominant legal framework through which the terms of this relationship, in specific Aboriginal rights and title, can be articulated and negotiated. For more about this, see our section on the residential school system.
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