A critical pedagogy of place

Throughout this narrative, we are given examples of reinhabitation and decolonization. When learning about the Mushkegowuk Cree concepts of land, environment and nature, the author of the narrative speaks of the importance of reinhabitation of Cree beliefs above European beliefs. One of the ways that reinhabitation is shown in this narrative is when the group of elders, youth and others in between go along the river to reconnect with their natural environment. This connection to the land is necessary for indigenous youth to reconnect with their cultural identity. Because there is an intergenerational language loss due to residential schools, the reintroduction of the Cree language is another example of reinhabitation. An example of this language gap would be the loss of the use of the word “paquataskamik” for the natural environment by the elders replaced by the word “noscheemik” by the youth to refer to their community. One example of decolonization presented in the narrative is the renaming of rivers and territories with traditional Cree words. Another example would be having community discussions regarding extraction of resources on traditional territory.

As a French language teacher, I would try to make a connection between indigenous and French cultures. As someone that comes from a predominantly white community I would encourage my students to makes connections between their own and the indigenous culture in order to have a better understanding of the plight of indigenous people in Canada.

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