This talk explores the role of treaty relations relative to the continuity of the settler colonial project in Canada. Often invoked to characterize the federal government’s commitment towards strengthening or renewing its relationship with Indigenous peoples, there remains a disjuncture between the ‘nation-to-nation’ depictions of treaties and the complex political relationships that Indigenous peoples have called for since their signing. Dr. Gina Starblanket explores the political implications of this inconsistency, arguing that the ongoing failure to engage with treaties as the locus of Indigenous peoples’ distinct political relationship with the Canadian state functions to continually produce conditions of colonization and dispossession through the denial of Indigenous sovereignty and jurisdiction as affirmed in treaties.
Gina Starblanket is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Calgary. Gina is Cree/Saulteaux and a member of the Star Blanket Cree Nation in Treaty 4 territory. She holds a PhD and MA from the University of Victoria and a BA (Honours) from the University of Regina. She has critical work in the American Indian Culture and Research Journal and the Canadian Journal of Political Science, and is the co-editor of the 5th edition of Visions of the Heart: Issues Involving Indigenous Peoples in Canada (2019) Her work is centered in Indigenous politics and Canadian politics, and takes up issues surrounding treaty implementation, gender, feminism, decolonization, Indigenous resurgence, and relationality.