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#IdleNoMore
and the Remaking of Canada
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Idle No More bewildered many Canadians. Launched by four women in Saskatchewan in reaction to a federal omnibus budget bill, the protest became the most powerful demonstration of Aboriginal identity in...
Idle No More bewildered many Canadians. Launched by four women in Saskatchewan in reaction to a federal omnibus budget bill, the protest became the most powerful demonstration of Aboriginal identity in...
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  • Idle No More bewildered many Canadians. Launched by four women in Saskatchewan in reaction to a federal omnibus budget bill, the protest became the most powerful demonstration of Aboriginal identity in Canadian history. Thousands of Aboriginal people and their supporters took to the streets, shopping malls, and other venues, drumming, dancing, and singing in a collective voice.Idle No More lasted for almost a year before the rallies dissipated. Many observers described it as a spent force. It was anything but. Idle No More was the most profound declaration of Indigenous identity and confidence in Canadian history, sparked by Aboriginal women and their supporters, sustained by young Indigenous peoples, filled with pride and determination. When the drums slowed, a new and different Canada was left in its wake. Partially stunned by the peaceful celebrations, but perplexed by a movement that seemed to have no centre and no leaders, most Canadians missed the point.Through Idle No More, Aboriginal people have declared that they are a vital and necessary part of Canada's future. The spirit of the drumming, singing and dancing lives on in empowered and confident young Aboriginal people who will shape the future of this country for decades to come.

About the Author-

  • Ken Coates is the author and editor of more than two dozen books, including The Marshall Decision and Native Rights and Land of the Midnight Sun. Raised in Whitehorse, he is the Canada Research Chair in Regional Innovation at the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy, University of Saskatchewan. He lives in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 4, 2015
    In 2012 and 2013, the Idle No More Aboriginal political movement swept across Canada like a prairie wind. Coates (Arctic Front) details how it began in Saskatchewan in the form of gatherings, mostly of Aboriginal women and children protesting against injustice, but the movement soon became complex: angry but peaceful, spontaneous but purposeful, more cultural than political but still deeply in opposition to Prime Minister Harper. Coates believes that Idle No More may prove to be "the most important and transformative event in recent Canadian history," and in seven chapters, he tries to explore what it is all about. The roots of Aboriginal anger lie in historical discrimination, racism, and ignored treaties. Idle No More is therefore an anti-colonial reaction to "generations of contact, conflict, and attempts at reconciliation." The Conservative government's Bill C-45—particularly its gutting of forest and waterway protections—was merely the spark that lit a long-existing Aboriginal fuse. Although the movement appeared to be spent by late 2013, Coates sees in its legacy the indomitable resilience of Aboriginal identity. Coates is an academic, but he writes with a forthright passion that should appeal to anyone interested in what it means to be Canadian in the 21st century.

  • Ovide Mercredi "A sincere and insightful book."

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    University of Regina Press
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