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The long reach of frontier justice: Canadian land claims ?negotiation? strategies as human rights violations

Samson, C and Cassell, E (2013) 'The long reach of frontier justice: Canadian land claims ?negotiation? strategies as human rights violations.' The International Journal of Human Rights, 17 (1). pp. 35-55. ISSN 1364-2987

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In this article, we argue that the Canadian land claims process is the product of a series of policies and laws directed at indigenous peoples which both denies them consent over the relinquishing of their lands, and is characterised by a lack of attention to the rights vested in indigenous peoples from colonial precedents. As a result, the contemporary Canadian land claims process does not measure up to the United Nations Declaration on Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and other international human rights protocols. It does not meet even rudimentary standards in regard to providing informed consent, requiring indigenous peoples to extinguish their ownership of their lands, dividing indigenous peoples into configurations that are artificial and diminishing their negotiating power, and creating invidiously asymmetric responsibilities between the state and the indigenous party. Our analysis will principally be based on a reading of the Innu Nation Tshash Petapen (New Dawn) land claims agreement and the social and political contexts in which it is situated. We conclude from our readings that expedients used in the past to obtain indigenous peoples' lands and to circumvent the colonial laws governing relationships with indigenous peoples are still evident today in Canada. They survive as a kind of victor's justice worthy of the frontier.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Canada; land claims; extinguishment; certainty; United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 01 May 2013 15:11
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 13:30

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