Resource: Wet’suwet’en Pipeline Dispute in Historical Perspective PowerPoint

Peaceful gathering in support of Wet'suwet'en, Saskatoon, February 22, 2020. Photo Credit: Justin Fisher

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Editor’s Note: This post originally appeared on Unwritten Histories.

I’m currently teaching a course on Public History at Concordia University. On Thursdays, we do workshops where we learn hands on skills, and I give my students the chance to decide the topics that we cover. This week, they wanted to learn more about the Wet’suwet’en Pipeline Dispute. As I was writing it, it occurred to me that there might be other people who might want to also cover this topic in class, but don’t know where to start or don’t have the time to do the extra research. So in the spirit of sharing, I have made the full PowerPoint, including notes, available below.

This PowerPoint presentation covers the following subjects:

  • Settler Colonialism
  • Treaties and the Indian Act
  • Background Information
    • Who are the Wet’suwet’en?
    • Delgamuukw vs. BC
    • Hereditary chiefs vs. elected band councils
  • The Conflict
  • The RCMP and Indigenous Resistance
  • Conclusion

And also includes a list of sources and additional resources.

There are a couple of things to keep in mind, however.

First, this is a PowerPoint presentation that was created by me for a particular purpose. It is not a complete overview of the Wet’suwet’en Pipeline Dispute, nor is it meant to provide anyone with an education about the subject. Rather, it is an educational aid that assumes you have a basic understanding of the history of settler colonialism and Western Expansion in Canada. As a result, while there are notes provided on certain slides, this is not the case for every slide. That’s because I tend to talk off the cuff when I’m lecturing, and I’ve taught parts of this lecture so many times that I don’t need notes on particular topics.

Second, I have used photographs in this PowerPoint that are drawn from news media. Since these are being used in an educational setting, this is considered acceptable according to the Copyright Act. Full image credits, including links, are available in the notes section of the presentation.

Third, you will note that I have only included basic information about Wet’suwet’en history, tradition, and culture. That’s because I am a settler who does not have a relationship with the Wet’suwet’en Nation. It is not my place to share any of that information. As I (and Krista McCracken and Skylee-Storm Hogan)  have explained previously, Indigenous knowledges can only be shared by specific people under specific circumstances. I would recommend keeping this in mind if you choose to discuss this topic in your class.

Finally, this PowerPoint presentation represents my current knowledge as of February 20, 2020. I am not an expert in this area, and I fully recognize that there are likely plenty of errors and omissions in this presentation. If there is anything you think I should change, please do let me know!

All that said, please feel free to use and share this PowerPoint presentation however you’d like, though credit would be appreciated! And I would love to know how it goes if you do end up using this presentation!

Wet’suwet’en Powerpoint Presentation

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Andrea Eidinger is currently a sessional instructor in the Department of History at Concordia University. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree (Hon) in History from McGill University (2006) and a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from the University of Victoria (2011). Her research examines the intersections of gender and ethnicity in postwar Canada, particularly with respect to the role that Jewish women have played in the establishment of Jewish-Canadian identity. Andrea currently resides on the unceded Indigenous lands of Tiohtià:ke (Montreal). She is the brains behind the popular blog, Unwritten Histories, www.unwrittenhistories.com. You can find her on twitter at @andreaeidinger

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