The history of Colonialism, and Capitalism has played a significant role in the construction and impact of how Aboriginal people are viewed presently in the Canadian society. The struggles, injustices, prejudice, and discrimination that have plagued Aboriginal peoples for more than three centuries are still grim realities today. Although the idea of rewriting history is an honorable one it is also an impossible one, but trying to rectify it isn't. In the film “Box of treasures” (1893), we learn about the creation of U’Mista Cultural Centre and how this is a great example of how Natives can begin to rebuild their identity and amend people’s views towards them.
Re-writing the dominant Euro-settler history of early Canadian art by reclaiming Indigenous art objects and history is ambitious but limited. The Europeans destroyed a lot of the native’s artifacts and their ideologies were manipulated and plagiarized, resulting in the cessation and the loss of the native’s art history. “…Between 1879 and 1885 the Smithsonian Institution collected 1600 pottery vessels from Acoma and Zumi villages” (Berlo and Phillips 1998, 14), causing a huge portion of native history to completely disintegrate. While completely preserving the pottery it made sure that the continuance was no longer possible. Story telling and oratory history are a tremendous and important part of Native art and culture, something passed down from generation to generation. During the second half of the 19th century native children were removed from their families and their homes and were put in boarding schools to “…become Christians and civilized, and where their ties to Aboriginal languages and cultures would finally be severed.” (Berlo and Phillips 1998, 21). This type of destruction of the native culture continued over the span of centuries and still continues to this day. Information about Native culture, both historically and present day, is not as easily accessible to the general public as we...
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