Canada is a country founded on relationships and agreements between Indigenous people and newcomers. Although recent court cases have strengthened Aboriginal rights, the cooperative spirit of the treaties is being lost as Canadians engage in endless arguments about First Nations “issues.” Greg Poelzer and Ken Coates breathe new life into these debates by looking at approaches that have failed and succeeded in the past and offering all Canadians – from policy makers to concerned citizens – realistic steps forward. The road ahead is clear: if all Canadians take up their responsibilities as treaty peoples, Canada will become a leader among treaty nations
About the authors
Greg Poelzer is a leading expert on Circumpolar affairs and the politics of the modern North. He has many years of experience in Russia and Scandinavia and has a long-standing interest in Arctic affairs in Canada. He is also founding Dean of Undergraduate Affairs for the University of the Arctic. He is an Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Saskatchewan.
Ken S. Coates was raised in Whitehorse and has a long-standing interest in northern themes. Titles include Canada’s Colonies, The Sinking of the Princess Sophia, The Modern North, North to Alaska (on the building of the Alaska Highway) and many academic books. He has worked on north-centred television documentaries and served as a consultant to northern governments and organizations. He is currently Professor of History and Dean of Arts, University of Waterloo.
- Short-listed, J.W. Dafoe Prize, The Dafoe Foundation
- Short-listed, University of Regina Arts and Luther College Award for Scholarly Writing, Saskatchewan Book Awards
- Short-listed, The Donner Prize, The Donner Foundation
… a welcome help to understanding ourselves as a nation and as individuals … Greg Poelzer and Ken Coates offer an accessible primer to the many ways Canada’s Indigenous peoples are retaking charge of their lives.
The greatest value of this volume [is that] it seeks to force productive debate, not fruitless fingerpointing and rancor. Whether or not it succeeds in doing so for Canada remains to be seen. Whether the United States, including the many indigenous peoples in the Great Plains, takes notice and begins more meaningful discussions of Americans as “Treaty Peoples” and a “Treaty Nation” likewise remains unclear. As a region with strong indigenous history and presence, these are debates worth having — on both sides of the border.
Great Plains Research
The book provides an excellent summary of the work of various Canadian Indigenous political scholars such as Kiera Ladner, Bonita Beaty, Dan Russell, John Borrows and Glenn Coulthard. The treaty theme runs throughout the book, with historical and contemporary examples. This allows the reader to understand the past but also facilitates awareness of the modern-day treaty process that is underway in some parts of Canada.
Alberta Views, Vol. 19 No. 10
What is clear from this survey is that no consensus exists around how to improve Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal relations. This sketch by Poelzer and Coates does, however, do more than provide the reader with a useful review of proposals aimed at solving the “Indian problem” in Canada; it allows the authors to situate their own approach within a very complex debate characterised by a diversity of opinions (both within the Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal intellectual communities). From Treaty Peoples to Treaty Nation’s originality flows from its focus on the practical elements of these problems. By contrast, most other scholars’ approaches are philosophical, idealistic, and theoretical … With the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s release of its Final Report earlier this year, Poelzer and Coates’ work could not be timelier.
Saskatchewan Law Review
Other titles by Greg Poelzer
The Dundurn Arctic Culture and Sovereignty Library
Pike's Portage/Death Wins in the Arctic/Arctic Naturalist/Arctic Obsession/Arctic Twilight/Arctic Front/Canoeing North Into the Unknown/Arctic Revolution/In the Shadow of the Pole/Voices From the Odeyak
Defending Canada in the Far North
Other titles by Ken S. Coates
Canada’s Founding Debates, 1864-1999
Land of the Midnight Sun, Third Edition
A History of the Yukon
Land of the Midnight Sun
A History of the Yukon, Third Edition
Considering College 2-Book Bundle
Dream Factories / What to Consider If You're Considering College
Considering University 2-Book Bundle
Dream Factories / What to Consider If You're Considering University
Why Universities Won't Solve the Youth Jobs Crisis
On the Frontier
Letters from the Canadian West in the 1880s
What to Consider If You're Considering College
New Rules for Education and Employment