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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Fort Chipewyan and the Shaping of Canadian History, 1788-1920s

"We like to be free in this country"

The story of the expansion of civilization into the wilderness continues to shape perceptions of how Aboriginal people became part of nations such as Canada. Patricia McCormack subverts this narrative of modernity by examining nation building from the perspective of a northern community and its residents. Fort Chipewyan, she argues, was never an isolated Aboriginal community but a plural society at the crossroads of global, national, and local forces. By tracing the events that led its Aboriginal residents to sign Treaty No. 8 and their struggle to maintain autonomy thereafter, this groundbreaking study shows that Aboriginal peoples and others can and have become modern without relinquishing cherished beliefs and practices.

408 pages

Table of Contents

1 Writing Fort Chipewyan History

2 Building a Plural Society at Fort Chipewyan: A Cultural Rababou

3 The Fur Trade Mode of Production

4 The Creation of Canada: A New Plan for the Northwest

5 Local Impacts: State Expansion, the Athabasca District, and Fort Chipewyan

6 Christian Missions

7 The Ways of Life at Fort Chipewyan: Cultural Baselines at the Time of Treaty

8 Treaty No. 8 and Métis Scrip: Canada Bargains for the North

9 The Government Foot in the Door

10 Fort Chipewyan and the New Regime

Epilogue: Facing the Future





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