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Indigenizing Columbia College: Library Resources

Indigenizing the classroom, decolonizing our minds

First Nations, Métis and Inuit

Carrying the Burden of Peace : Reimagining Indigenous Masculinities Through Story

Carrying the Burden of Peace weaves together stories of Indigenous life, love, eroticism, pain, and joy to map the contours of diverse, empowered, and non-dominant Indigenous masculinities.

Challenging Racist British Columbia: 150 Years and Counting

"This booklet dives into the long history of racist policies that have impacted Indigenous, Black and racialized communities in the province over the last 150 years since BC joined Canada. The illustrated booklet, co-published by the CCPA-BC Office, ties the histories of racism and resistance to present day anti-racist movements." (from CCPA website)

Whose Land is it Anyway? A Manual for Decolonization

This handbook provides a variety of Indigenous perspectives on the history of colonialism, current Indigenous activism and resistance, and outlines the path forward to reconciliation.

First in Canada: an Aboriginal Book of Days

Takes readers through one calendar year of Aboriginal history, providing visuals and details of past and contemporary achievements and challenges of First Nations, Metis and Inuit peoples of Canada.

Arrows in a Quiver: Indigenous-Canadian Relations from Contact to the Courts

Provides an overview of Indigenous-settler relations, including how land is central to Indigenous identity and how the Canadian state marginalizes Indigenous people.

First Nations self-government : 17 roadblocks to self-determination, and one Chief's thoughts on solutions

Chief Wolf Collar identifies 17 roadblocks that currently hinder Indigenous Nations--including broken treaty promises, problems with common forms of band administration, and the intrusion of provincial governments--along with potential solutions to overcome them.

Indigenous Relations: Insights, Tips & Suggestions to Make Reconciliation a Reality

We are all treaty people. This eagerly awaited sequel to the bestselling 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act offers practical tools that will help you respectfully avoid missteps in your business interactions and personal relationships with Indigenous Peoples.

Working with Elders & Indigenous Knowledge Systems

A practical, easy to follow, reader designed to provide both examples and suggestions so as to allow readers the ability to establish "a starting base from which they can develop their own ways of working with Elders..." (p. ii).

Indigenous Nationhood: Empowering Grassroots Citizens

A collection of the best blogs from Indigenous Nationhood produced by well-known lawyer, activist and academic Pamela Palmater. Her blogs offer critical legal and political commentary and analysis on legislation, Aboriginal rights, Canadian politics, and First Nation politics and social issues like murdered and missing Indigenous women, poverty, economics, and identity and culture.

Highway of Tears: a True Story of Racism, Indifference and the Pursuit of Justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

An explosive examination of the missing and murdered Indigenous women of Highway 16, and a searing indictment of the society that failed them.

Distorted Descent

Distorted Descent examines a social phenomenon that has taken off in the twenty-first century: otherwise white, French descendant settlers in Canada shifting into a self-defined "Indigenous" identity.

An Act of Genocide: Colonialism and the Sterilization of Aboriginal Women

Examines long-buried archival evidence documenting the forced sterilization of aboriginal women in Canada, linking this evidence to colonialism, the oppression of women, and the denial of indigenous sovereignty.

From Where I Stand: Rebuilding Indigenous Nations for a Stronger Canada

Drawn from speeches made over a ten-year period both at home and abroad, Jody Wilson-Raybould reveals why true reconciliation will occur only when Canada moves beyond denial, recognizes Indigenous Rights, and replaces the Indian Act.

Elements of Indigenous Style: a Guide for Writing by and About Indigenous Peoples

Provides guidelines to help writers, editors, and publishers produce material that reflects Indigenous people in an appropriate and respectful manner.

21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act

"Based on a viral article, 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act is the essential guide to understanding the legal document and its repercussion on generations of Indigenous peoples, written by a leading cultural sensitivity trainer. The Indian Act, after 141 years, continues to shape, control, and constrain the lives and opportunities of Indigenous peoples, and is at the root of many lasting stereotypes." -- Provided by publisher.

Why Indigenous Literatures Matter​

"It's about Indigenous literatures and underscores their significance to Indigenous peoples in the realm of the political, the creative, and the intellectual. It challenges readers to examine their assumptions about Indigenous literatures and at the same time asserts the emotional connections of our shared humanity and the transformative power of story."-- Provided by publisher.

Policing Indigenous Movements: Dissent and the Security State​

"The book blends discussions of settler colonialism, policing and surveillance, with a detailed exposé of current security practices that targets Indigenous movements. Using the Access to Information Act, the book offers a unique view into the extensive networks of policing and security agencies." -- Provided by publisher.

Suffer the Little Children

"Originally approved as a master of laws thesis by a respected Canadian university, this book tackles one of the most compelling issues of our time—the crime of genocide—and whether in fact it can be said to have occurred in relation to the many Original Nations on Great Turtle Island now claimed by a state called Canada." -- Adapted from back cover.

Native American Landmarks and Festivals​

"Descriptions and information about Native American festivals, museums, and other points of interest in the United States and Canada"--. Provided by publisher.

Stories of Métis Women: Tales my Kookum Told Me

Often misunderstood, the Metis are an Indigenous People with a unique and proud history and Nation. This book celebrates Nation building, culture, identity and resilience. 

Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada

Focusing on residential schools and Indigenous Peoples' historical relationship to the Canadian state, this is part of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society's four-volume atlas that shares the experiences, perspectives, and histories of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, and explores themes of language, demographics, economy, environment and culture.

Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada. Inuit

"In this atlas, you will find detailed pages on many aspects of Inuit in Canada with contemporary and historical photography, maps and more. There's also a section of frequently asked questions. This atlas, part of the Canadian Geographic Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada, was created by the Royal Canadian Geographical Society in conjunction with the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami." -- Back cover.

Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada. Métis

Focusing on Métis practice and experience, this is part of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society's four-volume atlas that shares the experiences, perspectives, and histories of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, and explores themes of language, demographics, economy, environment and culture, with in-depth coverage of treaties and residential schools.

Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada. First Nations

Focusing on First Nations practice and experience, this is part of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society's four-part volume that shares the experiences, perspectives, and histories of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, and explores themes of language, demographics, economy, environment and culture, with in-depth coverage of treaties and residential schools.

From Oral to Written​

A celebration of Indigenous literature in Canada from 1980-2010.

Talking Back to the Indian Act

Through analyzing 35 sources pertaining to the Indian Act that address governance, gender, enfranchisement, and land, the authors hope that students develop critical skills related to analyzing primary documents and come away with a much better understanding of this pivotal piece of legislation as well as the dynamics involved in its creation and maintenance.

Indians in the United States and Canada

Drawing on a vast array of primary and secondary sources, Roger L. Nichols traces the changing relationships between Native peoples and whites in the United States and Canada from colonial times to the present.

Braiding Sweetgrass

As a botanist and professor of plant ecology, Robin Wall Kimmerer has spent a career learning how to ask questions of nature using the tools of science. As a Potawatomi woman, she learned from elders, family, and history that the Potawatomi, as well as a majority of other cultures indigenous to this land, consider plants and animals to be our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass, Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowing together to reveal what it means to see humans as "the younger brothers of creation."

First Nations in the Twenty-First Century

Examines the lasting legacy and modern impacts of colonialism felt by contemporary Aboriginal peoples. Focusing predominantly on First Nations peoples and including coverage of Métis and Inuit, the second edition continues to address crucial topics such as the impact of residential schools, self-government and federal responsibility, and Aboriginal languages.

Haida Eagle Treasures: Traditional Stories and Memories from a Teacher of the Tsath Lanas Clan

Take a journey into the heart of Haida culture as it is lived and experienced by an extraordinary woman of the Tsath Lanas Eagle Clan. Pansy Collison, a Haida woman born and raised in Old Massett on Haida Gwaii, tells stories of her clan and community, as well as personal narratives about her history and family.

First Nations of British Columbia

This book familiarizes readers with the history and cultures of First Nations in British Columbia and provides a fundamental understanding of current affairs and concerns.

Strange Visitors

Covering topics such as the Indian Act, the High Arctic relocation of 1953, and the conflict at Ipperwash, Keith D. Smith draws on a diverse selection of documents including letters, testimonies, speeches, transcripts, newspaper articles, and government records.

Surviving Canada

Through essays, art, and literature, Surviving Canada examines the struggle for Indigenous Peoples to celebrate their cultures and exercise their right to control their own economic development, lands, water, and lives. The Indian Act, Idle No More, and the legacy of residential schools are just a few of the topics covered by a wide range of elders, scholars, artists, and activists.

Aboriginal Peoples in Canada

Approaching events from the perspective of both the majority and the minority, this book traces the history and evolution of AboriginalNon-Aboriginal relations over time. You will come away from the text with an understanding of Aboriginal rights within the context of the Canadian Constitution and Canadian society as a whole.


"Metis" has become an ever-widening racial category rather than the identity of an indigenous people with a shared sense of history and culture centred on the fur trade.Andersen asks all Canadians to consider the consequences of adopting a definition of "Metis" that makes it nearly impossible for the Metis nation to make political claims as a people.

From Treaty Peoples to Treaty Nation

The road ahead is clear: if all Canadians take up their responsibilities as treaty peoples, Canada will become a leader among treaty nations.

The Medicine Wheel: Environmental Decision-Making Process of indigenous Peoples

The goal of this book is to lay the context for how to connect Western science and Indigenous knowledge frameworks to form a holistic and ethical decision-making process for the environment.

Streaming Videos



The Way Home

Drawing on memory, legend, and his own art, Neel recounts his struggle to reconnect with his culture and become an accomplished Kwakwaka’wakw artist.

Inconvenient Skin

While Canada's history is filled with darkness, this collection of poems aims to unpack that history to clean the wounds of the infection so the nation can finally heal.

Hearts of our People: Native Women Artists

Explores the artistic achievements of Native women and establishes their rightful place in the art world. This lavishly illustrated book, a companion to the landmark exhibition, includes works of art from antiquity to the present, made in a variety of media from textiles and beadwork to video and digital arts.

The Land We Are

Using visual, poetic, and theoretical language, the contributors approach reconciliation as a problematic narrative about Indigenous-settler relations, but also as a site where conversations about a just future must occur.

Beau Dick

Dick's appreciation for Kwakwaka'wakw heritage inspired him to become involved in ceremony and the Hamatsa society of his nation and it has both imbued his work with the long traditions of Kwakwaka'wakw culture and embedded it within them.

Dana Claxton

Known for her expansive multidisciplinary approach to art making Vancouver-based Dana Claxton, who is Hunkpapa Lakota (Sioux), has investigated notions of Indigenous identity, beauty, gender and the body, as well as broader social and political issues through a practice which encompasses photography, film, video and performance.

Charles Edenshaw

Published in conjunction with an exhibition organized by the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Susan Point: Spindle Whorl

Survey[s] Point's entire career through more than a hundred artworks that take the spindle whorl as their starting point.

Seekers and Travellers

A celebration of contemporary northwest coast art, showcasing the works of thirty-six acclaimed artists of Canada and the U.S.

Susan Point: Works on Paper

This is the first book devoted exclusively to Susan Point's works on paper.

Mythic Beings

Mythic Beings presents an outstanding collection of 75 works - all in vivid colour - by 34 of the best First Nations artists working on the Northwest Coast today. The power of their art comes from its deep roots in an ancient culture that is rich in ceremonial and aesthetic traditions.

Sonny Assu

Through large-scale installation, sculpture, photography, printmaking, and painting, Sonny Assu merges the aesthetics of Indigenous iconography with a pop-art sensibility. This stunning retrospective spans over a decade of Assu's career, highlighting more than 120 full-color works, including several never-before-exhibited pieces.

Annie Pootoogook

Annie Pootoogook: Cutting Ice accompanies an exhibition organized by the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, the gallery of record for works on paper from Annie Pootoogook's Inuit community of Kinngait (Cape Dorset).

Alex Janvier

A canonical figure in Native American art history, Alex Janvier has maintained a 50-year artistic practice that fuses aboriginal traditions with modernist abstraction. This major retrospective monograph celebrates a lifetime of creativity and knowledge gained through the artist's love of the land, art and aboriginal culture.


SakKijâjuk - "to be visible" in the Nunatsiavut dialect of Inuktitut - provides an opportunity for readers, collectors, art historians, and art aficionados from the South and the North will come into intimate contact with the distinctive, innovative, and always breathtaking work of the contemporary Inuit artists and craftspeople of Nunatsiavut.

Indians Playing Indian

Explores the appropriation, or misappropriation, of Native American cultural heritage for political and commercial ends, and the innovative ways in which indigenous artists in a range of media have responded to these developments.

Brian Jungen

Brian Jungen has been acclaimed for producing evocative work that transforms ubiquitous consumer items into inventive sculptural forms, often linking his First Nations heritage to issues of cultural identity and the global economy.

Carrying on Irregardless

Collected here are artworks that act as political weapons, bold challenges to stereotypes, and nods to the Trickster. They satirise, ridicule and play. And, above all, they make us laugh, and think, and laugh again. Accompanying the work are descriptions, quips and jokes from the artists themselves.

Residential Schools

Up Ghost River

Edmund Metatawabin tells the story of his years as a child in the 1950s in St. Anne's, one of Canada's worst residential schools, and the healing he found from his alcoholism and PTSD through his reconnection with his Cree culture.

Residential Schools

Discusses the history of residential schools, including why the government established them, how Indigenous children were treated, and the lasting impact on Indigenous cultures and traditions.

A Knock on the Door

"It can start with a knock on the door one morning. It is the local Indian agent, or the parish priest, or, perhaps, a Mounted Police officer." So began the school experience of many Indigenous children in Canada for more than a hundred years, and so begins the history of residential schools prepared by the Truth & Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC).

They Called Me Number One

Tells of three generations of women who attended St. Joseph's Mission, interweaving the personal histories of her grandmother and her mother with her own.

Righting Canada's Wrongs - Residential Schools

Canada's residential school system for aboriginal young people is now recognized as a grievous historic wrong committed against First Nations, Metis, and Inuit peoples. This book documents this subject in a format that will give all young people access to this painful part of Canadian history.

This Benevolent Experiment​

This Benevolent Experiment offers a multilayered, comparative analysis of Indigenous boarding schools in the United States and Canada.

The Circle Game

Argues that existing accounts of Residential School experiences in various Canadian and Aboriginal media systematically obscure and misinform about the facts and their interpretation.

Truth and Indignation

Truth and Indignation offers a close and critical assessment of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission as it is unfolding.

Unsettling the Settler Within

Unsettling the Settler Within argues that non-Aboriginal Canadians must undergo their own process of decolonization in order to truly participate in the transformative possibilities of reconciliation. Settlers must relinquish the persistent myth of themselves as peacemakers and acknowledge the destructive legacy of a society that has stubbornly ignored and devalued Indigenous experience.

Shingwauk's Vision

Starting with the foundations of residential schooling in seventeenth-century New France, Miller traces the modern version of the institution that was created in the 1880s, and, finally, describes the phasing-out of the schools in the 1960s.

Canada's Other Red Scare

Indigenous activism put small-town northern Ontario on the map in the 1960s and early 1970s. Kenora, Ontario, was home to a four-hundred-person march, popularly called'Canada's First Civil Rights March,'and a two-month-long armed occupation of a small lakefront park. 

Intimate Integration

Privileging Indigenous voices and experiences, Intimate Integration documents the rise and fall of North American transracial adoption projects, including the Adopt Indian and Métis Project and the Indian Adoption Project. 


What Was Said to Me: The Life of Sti'tum'atul'wut, a Cowichan Woman

This first-person oral history documents a period of profound social change through the lens of Sti'tum'atul'wut--also known as Mrs. Ruby Peter--a Cowichan elder who made it her life's work to share and safeguard the ancient language of her people: Hul'q'umi'num'.



Part memoir and part manifesto, Unreconciled is a stirring call to arms to put truth over the flawed concept of reconciliation, and to build a new, respectful relationship between the nation of Canada and Indigenous peoples.

The Shoe Boy

A contemplative, honest, and unexpected coming-of-age memoir set in the context of the Cree struggle to protect their way of life, after massive hydro-electric projects forever altered the landscape they know as Eeyou Istchee.

Northern Wildflower

Catherine Lafferty tells her story of being a Dene woman growing up in a small northern Canadian mining town and her struggles with discrimination, poverty, addiction, love and loss.

In My Own Moccasins: a Memoir of Resilience

An unflinching account of addiction, intergenerational trauma, and the wounds brought on by sexual violence. It is also the story of sisterhood, the power of ceremony, the love of family, and the possibility of redemption.


A new, fully restored edition of the essential Canadian classic. An unflinchingly honest memoir of her experience as a Métis woman in Canada, Maria Campbell's Halfbreed depicts the realities that she endured and, above all, overcame.

From the Ashes: my Story of Being Metis, Homeless, and Finding my Way

A remarkable memoir about hope and resilience, and a revelatory look into the life of a Métis-Cree man who refused to give up.

The Reason You Walk

When his father was given a diagnosis of terminal cancer, Winnipeg broadcaster and musician Wab Kinew decided to spend a year reconnecting with the accomplished but distant aboriginal man who'd raised him.

Injichaag: My Soul in Story

This book shares the life story of Anishinaabe artist Rene Meshake in stories, poetry, and Anishinaabemowin "word bundles" that serve as a dictionary of Ojibwe poetics.

Graphic Novels and Picture Books


A powerful story that highlights the fulfillment of intergenerational relationships and shared passions between a little girl and the elderly woman who lives next door.

I Will See You Again

When the author learns of the death of her brother overseas, she embarks on a journey to bring him home. Through memories and dreams of all they shared together, she follows Dene teachings to find comfort and strength.

Click here for eBook version

The Orange Shirt Story

When Phyllis Webstad (nee Jack) turned six, she went to the residential school for the first time. On her first day at school, she wore a shiny orange shirt that her Granny had bought for her, but when she got to the school, it was taken away from her and never returned.

If I Go Missing

A powerfully illustrated graphic novel for teens about the subject of missing and murdered Indigenous people. Combining graphic fiction and non-fiction, this young adult graphic novel serves as a window into one of the unique dangers of being an Indigenous teen in Canada today.

Carpe Fin

The ragged edges of the temperate rainforest reach far out onto an island in the western seas. It is a place where one chooses to go ahead or turn back…

I Am Not a Number

A picture book based on a true story about a young First Nations girl who was sent to a residential school.

This Place

Explore the past 150 years through the eyes of Indigenous creators in this groundbreaking graphic novel anthology.

Sugar Falls

A school assignment to interview a residential school survivor leads Daniel to Betsy, his friend's grandmother, who tells him her story.

Pemmican Wars

Echo Desjardins, a 13 year-old Métis girl, is struggling with her feelings of loneliness while attending a new school and living with a new foster family. Then an ordinary day in Mr. Bee's history class turns extraordinary and Echo's life will never be the same. During Mr. Bee's lecture, Echo finds herself transported to another time and place--a bison hunt on the Saskatchewan prairie--and back again to the present.

Red River Resistance

Red River Resistance sees Echo Desjardins adjusting to her new home, making new friends, and learning about Metis history. One ordinary afternoon in class, Echo finds herself transported through time to the banks of the Red River in the summer of 1869.

Northwest Resistance

The protagonist Echo Desjarlais encounters the Metis people of the Northwest Territory, including leaders Louis Riel, Gabriel Dumont and Mistahimaskwa, in Batoche and other sites of the Resistance.

A Blanket of Butterflies​

A Blanket of Butterflies explores the journey of Shinobu, a mysterious stranger who visits Fort Smith, NWT, to retrieve his family's samurai suit of armor and sword from the local museum. When he discovers that his grandfather's sword has been lost in a poker game to the man they call "Benny the Bank," he sets out to retrieve it with the help of a young boy, Sonny, and his grandmother.

Three Feathers

Explores the power and grace of restorative justice in one Northern community and the cultural legacy that can empower future generations.

Surviving the City

Miikwan (Anishinaabe) and Dez (Inninew) are best friends. Together, the teens navigate the challenges of growing up Indigenous in the city - they're so close, they even completed their Berry Fast together. When Dez's grandmother becomes too sick, Dez can't stay with her anymore. With the threat of a group home looming, Dez can't bring herself to go home and disappears. Miikwan is devestated, and the wound of her missing mother resurfaces. Will Dez's community find her before it's too late? Will Miikwan be able to cope if they can't?

From the Roots Up (Surviving the City, Vol. 2)

Dez and Miikwan's stories continue in this sequel to Surviving the City. Dez's grandmother has passed away. Grieving, and with nowhere else to go, she's living in a group home. On top of everything else, Dez is navigating a new relationship and coming into her identity as a Two-Spirit person.

Louis Riel

The story of the charismatic, and perhaps mad, nineteenth century Métis leader, whose struggle to win rights for his people led to violent rebellion on the nation's western frontier.

Secret Path

The heart-rending story of an Indigenous boy seeking to escape the residential school system and return to his family.

The Outside Circle

Pete, a young Aboriginal gang member, is sent to jail for killing his mother's boyfriend during a fight. While there, he realizes that he has become a negative influence on his younger brother and decides to turn his life around with the help of traditional Aboriginal healing circles and ceremonies.


Red is the prideful leader of a small village in the islands off the northwest coast of British Columbia. His sister was abducted years ago by a band of raiders. When news comes that she has been spotted in a nearby village, Red sets out to rescue his sister and exact revenge on her captors.

7 Generations

7 Generations explores the life of Stone, a young Cree warrior, the smallpox epidemic of 1870, the residential school system of the 20th century and its familial legacy.


Helen Betty Osborne, known as Betty to her closest friends and family, dreamed of becoming a teacher. She left home to attend residential school and later moved to The Pas, Manitoba, to attend high school. On November 13, 1971, Betty was abducted and brutally murdered by four young men. Initially met with silence and indifference, her tragic murder resonates loudly today. Betty represents one of almost 1,200 Indigenous women in Canada who have been murdered or gone missing. This is her story.

Four Faces of the Moon

On a journey to uncover her family’s story, Spotted Fawn travels through time and space to reclaim connection to ancestors, language, and the land.