At the beginning of 2017, I came across a note on Twitter from the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Native studies about a new course they were offering, called “Indigenous Canada.” Curious, I clicked over to their website, and discovered that the course was designed to teach a non-specialized audience about Canadian history from an Indigenous perspective. Even better, it was being offered fully online, and it was free to audit. I had been looking for opportunities to learn more about Indigenous history in Canada, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I quickly signed up. Since I was one of the history nerds who actually looked forward to school (I really never understood the irony behind the Staples campaign, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” since I literally looked forward to returning to school all summer long), I was super excited to have the chance to be a student again. The prospect of finding some good resources that I could use in my own teaching seemed too good of an opportunity to pass up. But, to my pleasant surprize, the experience was far more enriching and transformative that I could have possibly imagined.
With the new session for the course beginning on July 10th, I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity to tell you about my experiences, and why I believe that everyone should take “Indigenous Canada.”
Welcome back to our regular series, Historian’s Histories, where we examine the historiography of historians! If you’ve spent any time on the internet lately, then you’re likely already familiar with our next
victim historian, Krista McCracken! Krista is well known as one of the fantastic editors behind the Canadian history powerhouse blog, Active History, and is a model for how to do public history in a socially responsible way. So I am exceptionally grateful and pleased to feature her work here! Enjoy!
Krista McCracken is a public history professional currently working as an Archives Supervisor at Algoma University’s Arthur A. Wishart Library and Shingwauk Residential Schools Centre. Krista’s research primarily focuses on community archives, residential schools, access, educational outreach and Northern Ontario. She lives and works on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe and Métis people.