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Anishinaabe Study Group Forms at McGill – The McGill Daily

by ahnationtalk on October 17, 2022173 Views

October 17, 2022

Last spring, Nathan Ince and Jenni Makahnouk met in a seminar class and discovered that they both shared an interest in learning the Anishinaabe language. Makahnouk is Anishinaabe, and  Ince, a Professor in the history department at McGill, was interested in learning it for his research. As a result, they’re now running an Anishinaabe Language Study Group this semester for any McGill students interested in the language. The Daily spoke to Ince, Makahnouk, and Nika Paul, another student involved, to learn more about this project and why they believe it’s needed at McGill.

“We both kind of came together and said ‘hey, why don’t we learn this together,’” Makahnouk explains. “I want to try to learn it to keep my language alive, and also learn more about my culture.”

Paul also pointed out that programs like this are valuable because “not all of us have the opportunity [to learn Anishinaabe] in our communities and our families because of colonization.” For most of Canada’s history, the federal and provincial governments have advanced colonial policies designed to suppress Indigenous language use, notably through the Indian Act, residential schools, and the “Sixties Scoop.”

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