Fall 2019 - FNST 110W D100

International Indigenous Lifewriting (4)

Class Number: 7943

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 3 – Dec 2, 2019: Mon, Wed, 10:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    Élise Couture-Grondin
    Office: TBA
    Office Hours: TBA



Exploration of Indigenous forms of research and inquiry (ie. genealogies, oral story-telling, autobiographies). Examine and explore life stories of Indigenous authors from around the world. Writing/Breadth-Humanities.


Key to Indigenous forms of research and inquiry (i.e. genealogies, oral storytelling, autobiographies) is an understanding of self in relation to one’s community. Yet this understanding includes not just one community but the many communities that we have responsibilities to (family, work, place of origin, current location) including our relationship to ancestors, descendants, and the land upon which we live. This course will explore writing by Indigenous people about their lives, in countries from around the world. Through course work students will practise writing both standard academic analysis and self-reflective prose, to consider the rhetorical uses (and limitations) of both.


  • Participation 10%
  • Journal 30%
  • Compare and Contrast Essay 20%
  • Personal Essay 20%
  • Take Home Exam 20%


FNST 101.



Pilkington, Doris. Follow the Rabbit Proof Fence. Reprinted Edition, 2013.

ISBN: 978-0-7022-3355-5.

Huamán, Hilaria Supa. Threads of My Life: The Story of Hilaria Supa Huamán, a Rural Quechua Woman. Translated by Mauricio Carlos Quintana. Theytus P, 2008.
ISBN: 978-1-894778-22-0.

Wagamese, Richard. For Joshua: An Ojibway Father Teaches His Son. Anchor, 2003.
ISBN: 978-0-385-69324-0

Manuel, Vera. Honouring the Strength of Indian Women. University of Manitoba Press, 2019.
ISBN: 978-0-88755-836-8

Above and beyond the required text, all reading and discussion materials related to the course will be made available through SFU CANVAS

Department Undergraduate Notes:

  1. Deferred grades will be given only on the basis of authenticated medical disability. 
  2. Students requiring accommodations as a result of a disability must contact the Centre for Accessible Learning (CAL) at 778-782-3112 or caladmin@sfu.ca.
  3. Remember to check the Student Information System (SIS) at the start of the term to reconfirm your classroom location(s).
  4. All students are expected to read and understand SFU policies with regard to academic honesty and student conduct (S10).
    These policies are available at: http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student.html

Department of First Nations Studies- Contact Info:
Webpage: www.sfu.ca/fnst
Phone: 778-782-4774
General Office: Saywell Hall (SWH) Room 9089. Burnaby Campus. (M-F, 09:00-16:30 Hrs.)
Academic Advisor's Office: SWH 9081.

For general information, program information, academic advising (appointment or program check-up; enrollment assistance*): Please email fnstmgr@sfu.ca.

* Students: When submitting a request or an inquiry, please email from your SFU Mail (@sfu.ca) email and remember to include your SFU Student ID number in your email. Thank you.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html