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Lecture 2

no110 week 2 notes .docx

Communication Studies
Course Code
Ian Roderick

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Thanadelthur – First Nations in Canada
Recap from last lecture:
The idea and the relevance of a nation is under question in the current era.
This course will consider how Canada’s identity has been shaped.
Narratives (stories) are important to understanding ourselves (personally and nationally). Biographies are
useful tools.
Why do we, as Canadians, know so little about ourselves?
Lecture Outline:
Fur Trade
Colonial Contact
Thanadelthur (1697-1717)
“She was one of a very high spirit and of the firmest resolution that ever I see any Body in my Days and of
great Courage & forecast”
Her story takes place in York factory (Manitoba) in the early 1700s.
In the spring on 1713 she was captured by the cree people for a year. After a year she escaped and she
and her companion and see if they could find some traders and go find where they are. They know these
traders have some interesting goods on them. Weather was very cold, her companion dies of starvation.
She goes on and manages to find a group of traders and goes back to York factory with them. Knight likes
Thanadelthur and sees potential for trading relationship.
1715 – Knight persuades Cree guards to go to Chipewyan about peace.
Travelling party stumbles upon 9 Chipewyan murdered, Cree want to leave (cold, no food, murders).
Thanadelthur convinces few Cree and stewart to make camp and wait for her for 10 days. She then locates
a band of 300 people to accompany them back to York.
Spring of 1717 they are advised to create a new trading post at Churchill.
Thanadelthur’s husband stays. During the winter, Thanadelthur became very sick. On her deathbed she
gave instructions on how to achieve peace between the Chipewyan people and the Cree.
Governor of HBC is impacted by her death.

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What can we learn from this:
First nations people really helped the way Canada shaped up to be.
Gender relations is important
Colonial empowerment
Example: Charlotte Small (native woman) & David Thompson (geographer)…expand.
First Nations believe :
1.Believe they’ve been there for Time and memorial
2.Aboriginal peoples easily adapted to their environment (food and land – sacred things)
environmental adaptability.
3. First Nations people are a heterogeneous people (diverse, different world views, stories)
John Cabot came in 1497 to Newfoundland. All looking for a way to get to Asia. (trying to find northwest
English and French have different approaches on how they are going to get to Asia. (enemies during this
time period) – different methods.
Champlain – settles in Quebec City.
Stereotypes of Natives come out (heathans, dirty savage Indians)
The Fur Trade
Pelts of beaver changed everything. (hats)
Beginning as early as 15 or 16th century.
Spearheaded by the HBC (1670s)
Harold Innis
Professor at UofT
Puts together series of books, first book, “fur trade in Canada”.
Theory becomes known as the ‘staples theory’ about economics. Says that economies of nations
(particularly Canada) is based on resource exploitation (Canada we have exploited wheat, timber, oil etc).
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