October 20, 2019

Winnipeg
12° C, Overcast

Full Forecast

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

Aboriginals under attack: book

Says negative images prevalent in papers

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 17/10/2011 (2924 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Two University of Regina authors say colonialism and racism are dominant threads that weave through the fabric of Canada's English-language newspapers, colouring coverage of aboriginal stories from the Northwest Rebellion to the Oka crisis.

The result is prevalence of negative stereotypes that haunt race relations with aboriginal people to this day, they say.

History professor Mark Cronlund Anderson and art history associate professor Carmen Robertson surveyed 42 local, regional and national daily newspapers from 1869 to the present.

They looked at how aboriginal people were portrayed in historic events like the rebellion, which led to the 1885 hanging of Manitoba Métis leader Louis Riel, the 1974 Bended Elbow standoff in Kenora and the 1990 Oka crisis, as well as in editorials, columns and letters to the editor for the past 140 years.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 17/10/2011 (2924 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Two University of Regina authors say colonialism and racism are dominant threads that weave through the fabric of Canada's English-language newspapers, colouring coverage of aboriginal stories from the Northwest Rebellion to the Oka crisis.

The result is prevalence of negative stereotypes that haunt race relations with aboriginal people to this day, they say.

A new book looks at the treatment of First Nations people in Canada's newspapers.

A new book looks at the treatment of First Nations people in Canada's newspapers.

History professor Mark Cronlund Anderson and art history associate professor Carmen Robertson surveyed 42 local, regional and national daily newspapers from 1869 to the present.

They looked at how aboriginal people were portrayed in historic events like the rebellion, which led to the 1885 hanging of Manitoba Métis leader Louis Riel, the 1974 Bended Elbow standoff in Kenora and the 1990 Oka crisis, as well as in editorials, columns and letters to the editor for the past 140 years.

The result is the book, Seeing Red: A History of Natives in Canadian Newspapers, to be launched today in Regina by its publisher, the University of Manitoba.

The findings could surprise Canadians who believe racism and colonialism are visages of a bygone era, the authors write.

"An examination of press content in Canada since the sale of Rupert's Land in 1869 through to 2009 illustrates with respect to aboriginal people that colonial imagery has thrived, even dominated, and continues to do so in mainstream English-language newspaper," the authors write.

The focus on newspapers does not mean other media are free of a pattern of racism that has profound effects on all Canadians, but most especially on Canada's 633 First Nations, the authors say.

In an email exchange, the authors told the Free Press "surprise is not the right word" to describe how they view their findings.

"Look, the country, Canada, was founded in conquest. That's not in dispute. And what seems to happen, here and in other countries colonized by Europeans, is that you can't shake the cultural effects of the initial onslaught," they said.

alexandra.paul@freepress.mb.ca

Alexandra Paul

Alexandra Paul
Reporter

Alexandra is a veteran news reporter who has covered stories for the Winnipeg Free Press since 1987. She held the medical beat for nearly 17 years, and today specializes in coverage of Indigenous-related issues. She is among the most versatile journalists on the paper’s staff.

Read full biography

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

History

Updated on Tuesday, October 18, 2011 at 10:48 AM CDT: Adds photo

You can comment on most stories on The Winnipeg Free Press website. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

By submitting your comment, you agree to abide by our Community Standards and Moderation Policy. These guidelines were revised effective February 27, 2019. Have a question about our comment forum? Check our frequently asked questions.

Advertisement

Advertise With Us