Fall 2023 - INDG 201W D100

Indigenous Peoples' Perspectives on History (3)

Class Number: 4398

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 6 – Dec 5, 2023: Fri, 2:30–5:20 p.m.



An examination of fact and ideology in history and historic events involving contact between Indigenous and European peoples. The course will also address questions of research methodologies in studying Indigenous/European relations, such as the evaluation of oral history and written ethnohistoric sources. An additional focus will be on gender as it influences perspectives. Students with credit for FNST 201W may not take this course for further credit. Writing/Breadth-Social Sci.


This course will examine fact and ideology in history and historical events involving colonial contact and the relationships between Indigenous and European relations, such as the evaluation of oral history and written ethnohistoric sources. Rather than a course on the history of Indigneous peoples, it is a course told from Indigenous perspectives with a focus on examining historical documents, museums, public school textbooks, ethnographies, and archives. As a writing intensive course, assignments and course content are geared towards developing students' writing, with a focus on clarity, style, citations, and formulating a coherent argument. Students with credit for FNST 201W may not take this course for further credit. Writing/Breadth-Social Science Credit. 

This course was originally created and designed by Dr. Deanna Reder and many of the assignments, content, and layout were developed by Dr. Reder and her colleagues. 


  • Identify and understand important processes and periods in the history of Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples during the last 1,000 years within the context of what is now colonially-known as Canada, including the fur trade, missionization, treaty making, government policies of the last 200 years, European settlement, and Indigenous peoples' dispossession of their lands and cultures. 
  • Critically understand the concept of historiography and how historians present and analyze information about events and processes of the past, in particular as it is relevant for understanding the writing of Indigenous peoples' history. 
  • Assess how historical writing, while presented as objective and scientific, has also been driven by political motivations and culturally and socially based assumptions on the part of the historian and the sociopolitical views they represent. 
  • Understand how Indigenous peoples have been portrayed in European historical writing during the last few centuries and how these portrayals, in turn, reflect social, economic, and political processes in European society. 
  • Have an understanding of the importance of oral history research in describing and analyzing histories of Indigenous peoples.
  • Appreciate the culture-specific ways in which Indigenous elders talk(ed) about their pasts and tell their histories and their stories.
  • Understand and critically assess current concerns of Indigenous peoples about having their own representations of their pasts validated by the Canadian political and legal system. 
  • Proceed to further self-directed readings and/or advanced topics and courses about Indigenous history from an informed and critical basis.


  • Writing Assignments 60%
  • Research Paper 30%
  • Participation in Class Exercises and Discussion 10%



Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website 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


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the semester are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.