Summer 2016 - HIST 443W D100
Aboriginal Peoples, History and the Law (4)
Class Number: 4742
Delivery Method: In Person
Traces the development of legal doctrine pertaining to Aboriginal peoples in Canada and the United States, including its shared roots in British colonial law and policy. Students with credit for FNST 443, or HIST 485 or 486 under this topic may not take this course for further credit. Writing.
Aboriginal peoples in both Canada and the United States have a relationship with their respective governments unlike that of any other political or ethnic group, rooted in their own particular historical experience and the body of legal doctrine that has evolved in response to that history. Over the course of the last two centuries, law was frequently used to restrict the rights of Aboriginal peoples in order to facilitate the incorporation of their traditional territories into the American and Canadian states. Ironically, legal formulations intended primarily to limit the rights of Aboriginal peoples also often had unintended consequences, including that the basic principle that Aboriginal rights are deserving of acknowledgement is now firmly imbedded in both U.S. and Canadian law, although questions remain as to the scope of those rights under the law. We will trace the development of these bodies of law to their common roots in British colonial law and policy, and compare and contrast ways in which core elements have evolved in Canada and the United States. We will also examine the larger historical context in which each body of doctrine developed, including historical patterns or contingencies that explain the various contours each assumed over time, as well as some of the many ways in which Aboriginal people sought to shape or resist legal agreements or proscriptions imposed on their communities in an effort to mitigate their impact.
This is a history course focused ways in which law was deployed in the articulation of colonialism and empire. Students will use comparative and transnational methodologies to compare and analyze specific elements of the domestic law of Canada and the United States that pertains to Aboriginal people, and to identify parallels and differences in the way each nation used law to define colonial relationships.
- Participation 20%
- Readings Presentation & Outline 10%
- In-class Writing Assignments 10%
- Readings Response Papers 40%
- Historical Case Study/Final Paper 20%
Assigned articles and materials, including court cases and other legal texts, available through Canvas or SFU Library databases.