Welcome to Women, Contemporary Aboriginal Issues, and Resistance, a free kit designed to help you and your students, your classmates, or your friends explore what it’s like to grow up Aboriginal and what other young Canadians learn about Indigenous peoples.
Women, Contemporary Aboriginal Issues, and Resistance helps strip away the fears and stigmas that keep people from speaking openly about Aboriginal issues. We hope to create a better understanding of each other and ourselves.
The kit follows the lives of three fictional children as they grow into adulthood, quickly becoming aware of the way their prejudices, Aboriginal roots, and friendships continue to play an important role in shaping their view of each other, and our country.
You do not need a teacher, although you may want to have a discussion leader or organizer to keep everyone on track. Women, Contemporary Aboriginal Issues, and Resistance is recommended for ages 14+ and is suited for individual study, or groups as large as 30.
There are six items in the kit:
1) Fears Card: please begin your journey here (.pdf, 4 MB, 2 pages).
2) Three Storybooks: read these books in order:
Book 1 (three chapters) (.pdf, 6 MB, 2 pages)
Book 2 (three chapters) (.pdf, 10 MB, 16 pages)
Book 3 (seven journal entries) (.pdf, 9.5 MB, 20 pages)
You can read the books in three sessions with discussion, or in 13 sessions of one chapter each with discussion.
3) Video: download/view the video at any time during your progress. The complete video is 83 minutes, divided over 9 chapters and is available via the Mount's E-commons. It may be best to look at the first three chapters before you read Book 1, chapters four to six before you read Book 2, and chapters seven to nine before you read Book 3.
The video features five distinguished Aboriginal women who are scholars, artists, and activists:Dr. Joan Glode, CM, First Nations Child & Family Caring Society board member, social worker, Mi’kmaq, Halifax; Ursula A. Johnson, basket-maker and performance artist, Mi’kmaq, Eskasoni First Nation; Ruth Cuthand, visual artist, Cree, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon; Dorothy Christian, film-maker, PhD candidate, Okanagan-Secwepemc Nations, Vancouver.
4) Additional Resources Card: please read this info at any time (.pdf, 6 MB, 2 pages).
These materials are the result of interactions with 20 university students, five distinguished Aboriginal women that you’ll meet in the video, approximately 100 high school students, and 300 adults who generously gave their time.
Women, Contemporary Aboriginal Issues, and Resistance grew from a 2012 course at the Mount, earning a Social Sciences, Humanities, Research Council (SSHRC) grant to disseminate a nationwide application of the experience. The kit will be the first publication produced by the newly renamed Alexa McDonough Institute for Women, Gender and Social Justice.