DEFINING SPACE: HOW HISTORY SHAPED AND INFORMED NOTIONS OF KASKA LAND USE AND OCCUPANCY
Iceton, Glenn 1980-
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Beginning in the 1970s, as the federal government began to negotiate comprehensive land claims based on extant Aboriginal title, historical understandings of Indigenous land use and occupancy gained new significance as a means of demonstrating title. As Indigenous groups – such as the Kaska Dena – tried to demonstrate their Aboriginal title, they grappled with the legacy of colonial perspectives of their land use and occupancy. These colonial perspectives had the complex and sometimes contradictory effects of supporting their claims, while simultaneously circumscribing them within a Eurocentric framework. Historical renderings of Kaska Dena land use occurred within specific historical and environmental contexts. Moreover, outsider representations of Kaska Dena land use were shaped by the particular interests of the outsider or colonial observer – be it the interests of pursuing fur trade or bringing Indigenous peoples under state administration. This dissertation examines the historical unfolding of colonial knowledge relating to Kaska Dena land use and occupancy, beginning with contact and extending to the 1970s, when the federal government agreed to negotiate outstanding Indigenous land claims. The dissertation then focuses on how these past understandings of Kaska Dena land use influenced their abilities to advance their territorial rights within the context of comprehensive land claim negotiations and the emerging regime of environmental impact assessments. This analysis also considers how the Kaska Dena mobilized community-based knowledge to sometimes support and sometimes counter colonial representations of Kaska Dena land use.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
CommitteeCarlson, Keith; Clifford, Jim; Coates, Ken; Kalinowski, Angela
Copyright DateJune 2019
Environmental Impact Assessment