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From ‘Decolonized’ to Reconciliation Research in Canada: Drawing from Indigenous Research Paradigms

Deborah McGregor

2018 Canada

When the Honorable Justice Murray Sinclair, Chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) was asked the one message that non-Aboriginal Canadians can learn from the work of the TRC, he said “put the relationship back into balance”. Sinclair stressed that in order to achieve reconciliation and facilitate balance in the relationship we need to change the way non-Aboriginal people are educated about Aboriginal peoples. Justice Sinclair also stated that racism and colonialism are firmly embedded structurally, systemically and institutionally in Canada. This has to change. This paper will explore how the findings from the TRC can transform the theory and practice of reconciliation research in Canada. How can the academy respond appropriately and meaningfully to the TRC recommendations? This paper proposes that reconciliation research agendas should draw upon Indigenous research paradigms which privilege Indigenous worldviews, epistemologies, and knowledges as productive elements in the way forward.

Indigenous research; reconciliation; truth and reconciliation commission