Treaties Recognition Week

Treaties Recognition Week honours the importance of treaties and encourages Ontarians to learn about treaty rights and relationships. Highlighted below are resources, curated by Humber’s Indigenous Education and Engagement and Humber Libraries, to support treaty education as we acknowledge treaty rights, responsibilities and relationships.

The Treaty Relationship

"Understanding Treaty relationships and promises requires applying both Indigenous and non-Indigenous perspectives. The oral histories of Treaty negotiations have a place in the Treaty interpretation process." -  Aimée Craft, Living well together: Understanding treaties as agreements we share.

We invite you to explore Canada’s colonial past: the historical development of treaties, and treaty relationships as perceived by settlers and voices from Indigenous knowledge holders and communities – the original stewards of the land. Take a closer look at the history of treaties from an Anishinaabeg perspective in a beautifully illustrated video: We are all Treaty People.

Explore further with these selected library resources:

Chapter 3: Treaties of Canada. In Truth and Reconciliation in Canadian schools (eBook)

  • This chapter provides an excellent entry point into teaching about Canadian treaties with a holistic and reconciliatory approach

From treaty peoples to treaty nation: A road map for all Canadians (In Print)

  • This book discusses past and present treaty relationships, and providing realistic steps Canada can take to ensure we are honouring and acting upon treaty responsibilities.

The right relationship: Reimagining the implementation of historical treaties (eBook)

  • Indigenous and non-indigenous scholars are asked, in this collection, to cast light on the magnitude of the challenges Canadians face in seeking a consensus on the nature of treaty partnership in the twenty-first century.

Keeping promises: The Royal Proclamation of 1763, Aboriginal rights, and treaties in Canada (eBook)

  • In this book, essays by historians, lawyers, treaty negotiators, and Indigenous leaders explore the execution of the Canadian treaties.

Trick or treaty? (Streaming Video)

  • Obomaswin’s film portrays one community’s attempt to enforce their treaty rights and protect their lands, while also revealing the complexities of contemporary treaty agreements.

The numbered treaties and the politics of incoherency (Journal Article)

  • This article explores the inconsistent ways in which treaties have been taken up within Canadian legal and political institutions, arguing that the incoherency surrounding treaties promulgates the notion that treaties are being implemented while simultaneously obscuring, distorting and minimizing the rights of Indigenous peoples in practice.

Dancing around the table: Part One and Part 2 (Streaming Video)

  • This two part documentary, directed by Maurice Bulbulian, was filmed when the constitution was being repatriated and Indigenous leaders were advocating for section 35 recognition. 

The Toronto Purchase: The Indigenous Land Of Tkaronto

Humber College is located within the traditional and treaty lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit. Known as Adoobiigok, the “Place of the Alders” in Michi Saagiig language, the region is uniquely situated along Humber River Watershed, which historically provided an integral connection for Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee, and Wendat peoples between the Ontario Lakeshore and the Lake Simcoe/Georgian Bay regions. Now home to people of numerous nations, Adoobiigok continues to provide a vital source of interconnection for all.” - Humber Land Acknowledgement

We encourage you to explore the land Humber is built upon by following a virtual path through Humber’s Indigenous Cultural Markers. Learn about the Indigenous History of Tkaronto, and the Toronto Purchase, Treaty Number 13 (1805). View a beautifully personalized land acknowledgement uncovering an oral history of Tkaronto - with illustrations by Chief Lady Bird, or discover and download First Story App, containing maps and walking tours related to Toronto’s Indigenous communities, both past and present.

Explore further with these selected library resources:

Indigenous Toronto: Stories that carry this place. (eBook)

  • With contributions by Indigenous Elders, scholars, journalists, artists, and historians, this unique anthology explores the poles of cultural continuity and settler colonialism that have come to define Toronto as a significant cultural hub and intersection that was also known as a Meeting Place long before European settlers arrived.

No surrender: The land remains Indigenous (eBook)

  • The research in this book exposes how the Canadian government deceptively misled Indigenous nations during treaty negotiations.

The clay we are made of: Haudenosaunee land tenure on the Grand River (eBook)

  • This award winning book offers a retelling of the history of the Grand River Haudenosaunee from their Creation Story, through European contact, to contemporary land claims negotiations.

Looking after gdoo-naaganinaa: Precolonial Nishnaabeg diplomatic and treaty relationships (Journal Article)

  • This article articulates Nishnaabeg cultural perspectives on relationships with the land, the non-human world, and other Indigenous nations, relying on academic literature interpreted through an Nishnaabeg lense. This perspective exists in contrast to mainstream academic literature regarding treaties.

Tkaronto (DVD, in Library Holdings)

  • Tkaronto is a reflective and provoking exploration of two Indigenous 30-somethings, Ray and Jolene, who make an unexpected connection at the pinnacle of a common struggle: to stake claim to their urban Indigenous identity.

Law's Indigenous Ethics (eBook)

  • Organized around the seven Anishinaabe grandmother and grandfather teachings of love, truth, bravery, humility, wisdom, honesty, and respect, this book explores ethics in relation to Indigenous issues including title, treaties, legal education, and residential schools in Canada.

Lessons from the land: Peace through relationship. In standing with Standing Rock: Voices from the #NoDAPL movement (eBook)

  • Michelle Latimer reflects on her experience at Standing Rock, Toronto and her connection with the land.

Treaty Areas: Whose Land Are You On?

I’d like to acknowledge that we are on stolen land.

I’d like to acknowledge that we are on borrowed land.

I’d like to acknowledge that we are on overdue land.

I’d like to acknowledge that we are on pickpocketed land.

I’d like to acknowledge that we are on empty land.

I’d like to acknowledge that we are on full land.

I’d like to acknowledge the knowledge of like to acknowledge you like me acknowledging.

I’d like to acknowledge that we are trespassing on someone else’s property if that someone else had property and if we are who we think we are and not, in fact, perhaps also someone else’s acknowledgement.

I’d like to acknowledge I meant that.

—Clint Burnham, excerpt from No Poems on Stolen Native Land (2010)

Explore Whose Land or Native Land to learn about your location and the history of the land you are on. Look to Humber’s Land Acknowledgement Best Practices, or resources like the Native Governance Centre, for tips to writing your own, appropriate Indigenous land acknowledgement.

Explore further with these selected library resources:

Children of the broken treaty: Canada's lost promise and one girl's dream (eBook)

  • In a movement inspired by Shannen Koostachin, a young Cree woman, Angus works to establish how Canada--through breaches of treaties, broken promises, and callous neglect--deliberately denied Indigenous children their basic human rights.

Why Indigenous literatures matter (eBook)

  • This book contemplates four key questions at the heart of Indigenous kinship traditions: How do we learn to be human? How do we become good relatives? How do we become good ancestors? How do we learn to live together?

Rethinking the practice and performance of Indigenous land acknowledgement (Journal article)

  • This article is based on a plenary panel of Indigenous scholars asked to consider land acknowledgements and questions such as: how might acknowledgement be ‘actioned’ differently by settler Canadians, ‘arrivants,’ immigrants, displaced peoples, and visitors?

Treaty # (In Print)

  • A book of poems, drawing upon Armand Ruffo’s Ojibwe heritage and his connection to place.

Arrows in a quiver: From contact to the courts in Indigenous-Canadian relations (eBook)

  • A comprehensive political and legal overview of Indigenous-settler relations in Canada, written at a level appropriate for both college and university students.

Two Row Wampum And Wampum Belts

The Two Row Wampum belt is made of white and purple beads. The white beads denote truth. Our record says that one purple row of beads represents a sailboat. In the sailboat are the Europeans, their leaders, their government, and their religion. The other purple row of beads represents a canoe. In the canoe are the Native Americans, their leaders, their governments, and their Way of Life, or religion as you say it. We shall travel down the road of life, parallel to each other and never merging with each other.” -- Onondaga Nation Chief Irving Powless Jr

We invite you to explore the significance of Two Row Wampum and wampum belts. Listen to Rick Hill speak on the importance of The Dish with One Spoon and The Two Row Wampum. Read about Nation-to-Nation relationships and the meaning of Wampum in Our Stories, watch and listen to Alan Ojiig Corbiere discuss The Underlying Importance of Wampum Belts, and read an introduction the Two Row Wampum, one of the oldest treaty relationships made in 1613, between the Dutch and the Haudenosaunee peoples. Listen to a beautiful poem by poet Lena Recollet, to acknowledge the history and territorial land of Tkaronto.

Explore further with these selected library resources:

Two-row wampum reimagined: Understanding the hybrid digital lives of contemporary Kanien’kehá:Ka youth (Journal Article)

  • Jacobs uses the Two Row Wampum to describe her experience as Kanien’kehá:ka person. The article emphasizes the hybrid identity of contemporary Indigenous youth who not only reconcile traditional and contemporary identities, but also participate actively in several digital communities and life worlds.

Pathways for Remembering and Recognizing Indigenous Thought in Education: Philosophies of Iethi’nihstenha Ohwentsia’kekha (Land). (eBook)

  • This book uses wampum as the basis for a philosophy of education.

Reading the wampum: Essays on hodinöhsö:Ni’ visual code and epistemological recovery (eBook)

  • Reading the Wampum, Kelsey provides the first academic consideration of the ways in which these sacred belts are reinterpreted into current Haudenosaunee tradition. While Kelsey explores the aesthetic appeal of the belts, she also provides insightful analysis of how readings of wampum belts can change our understanding of specific treaty rights and land exchanges.

The truth that wampum tells: My debwewin on the Algonquin land claims process (In Print)

  • The Truth that Wampum Tells offers readers a first-ever insider analysis of the contemporary land claims and self-government process in Canada.

The two row wampum-covenant chain tradition as a guide for Indigenous-university research partnerships (Journal Article)

  • This article examines the oldest known treaty between incoming Europeans and Indigenous North Americans to derive five basic principles to guide healthy, productive relationships between Indigenous community-based researchers and university-based ones.

Kayanerenkó:wa: the great law of peace (In Print)

  • In this book, Paul Williams, counsel to Indigenous nations for forty year, brings the sum of his experience and expertise to this analysis of Kayanerenkó:wa as a living, principled legal system. In doing so, he puts a powerful tool in the hands of Indigenous and settler communities.

Honouring Treaty Relationships: What’s Next?

My great-great-grandfather was Chief Makanecha, or, as the white man interpreted it, Chief Bigfoot. Makanecha signed Treaty 8 in 1911 […] Auntie told me that he had waited to sign to see if the white men would hold their promises and to make sure that our people would remain free and not be stuck on reserves. Our people were the last to sign a Treaty. I have heard that they left us to last because they hoped we would die off and they wouldn’t have to deal with us.” Helen Knott, from In My Own Moccasins : A Memoir of Resilience.

We encourage you not only to reflect on the historical treaties, but ask you to consider how to honour these treaty relationships moving forward. Land claims, protests, occupations and blockades are currently happening across Canada. Learn about land claims in process in Ontario. Read news about the long fight in Caledonia, the Six Nations Grand River land dispute, just 100 km west of Toronto; the Wet'suwet'en Conflict, regarding pipelines in British Columbia; the ongoing dispute regarding Mi’kmaw fishing rights in Nova Scotia. Let Wab Kinew take you on an exploration of land claims and treaty rights protest across Canada, and in Attawapiskat, in his 8th Fire series. Or, listen to a podcast series, Call Her Aunty by Humber’s Quazance Boissoneau and Grace Francisci as they interview Regina Hartwick on Indigenous treaties, reconciliation and resurgence.

Explore further with these selected library resources:

Our Hearts Are as One Fire: An Ojibway-Anishinabe Vision for the Future. (eBook)

  • Jerry Fontaine retells the stories of three Ota’wa, Shawnee, and Ojibway-Anishinabe leaders who challenged colonial expansion, reframing history and sharing a vision of how Anishnabe principles will support leaders of today and tomorrow.

All our relations: Finding the path forward (eBook)

  • Talaga explores the legacy of cultural genocide against Indigenous peoples and how to move forward, in her CBC Massey Lecture.

Resurgence and reconciliation: Indigenous-settler relations and earth teachings (eBook)

  • By using “earth-teachings” to inform social practices, the editors and contributors offer a rich, innovative, and holistic way forward in response to the world’s most profound natural and social challenges. This timely volume shows how the complexities and interconnections of resurgence and reconciliation and the living earth are often overlooked in contemporary discourse and debate.

This place: 150 years retold (In Print)

  • This graphic novel explores the past 150 years through the eyes of Indigenous creators.

From where I stand: Rebuilding Indigenous nations for a stronger Canada (In Print)

  • Jody Wilson-Raybould reveals why true reconciliation will occur only when Canada moves beyond denial, recognizes Indigenous Rights, and replaces the Indian Act.

IdleNoMore: And the remaking of Canada (eBook)

  • 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.

Want to learn further about these subjects and more? Check out events organized by Humber’s IE&E or register for this year’s Indigenous Knowledges Gathering.

Visit the Library’s Indigenous Research Guide for more about our Indigenous collection at Humber.

Choose from the list to find library resources specific to that type.