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First Peoples of Canada

First Peoples of Canada: Masterworks from the Canadian Museum of Civilization

Jean-Luc Pilon
Nicholette Prince
with a foreword by Douglas Cardinal
Ian Dyck
Andrea Laforet
Eldon Yellowhorn
Copyright Date: 2013
Pages: 176
  • Book Info
    First Peoples of Canada
    Book Description:

    This beautifully designed, full-colour book presents a collection of 150 archaeological and ethnographic objects produced by Canada's First Peoples - including some that are roughly 12,000 years old - that represent spectacular expressions of creativity and ingenuity.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-1676-9
    Subjects: Art & Art History, Sociology, Anthropology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. [i]-[iv])
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. [v]-[v])
  3. Foreword
    (pp. 1-3)
    Douglas Cardinal

    During the last ice age, most of what we now know as Canada was covered by ice and glaciers. A land bridge connected what are now Alaska and Siberia and over this bridge our ancestors migrated into North America. When the ice age ended and the glaciers receded, the lakes, rivers, plains, and vast forests emerged with new life and the people who migrated flourished.

    The people understood that their new environment was fragile. At times, almost without warning, large volumes of arctic air could cause great fluctuations in temperature. To survive, the people had to develop a deep understanding...

  4. Introduction
    (pp. 5-6)
    Jean-Luc Pilon and Nicholette Prince

    Over the summer of 2007, the Canadian Museum of Civilization hosted a spectacular exhibition,Treasures from China, developed in partnership with the National Museum of China. This exhibition had been years in planning and saw, for the first time, many priceless artifacts leave China to be exhibited only in Canada and only at the Canadian Museum of Civilization. Part of the agreement to allow this exhibition to take place was that a reciprocal exhibition showcasing treasures of the First Peoples of Canada would be prepared by the Canadian Museum of Civilization and shown in China’s capital. This show would coincide...

  5. A Bastion of Our Past: A Short History of the Canadian Museum of Civilization
    (pp. 9-12)
    Jean-Luc Pilon, Nicholette Prince and Ian Dyck

    The Canadian Museum of Civilization holds an unsurpassed collection of artifacts relating to the history of the Aboriginal peoples of Canada. This unique gathering of archaeological and ethnographic items allows all visitors to the museum to appreciate the diversity and richness of Canada’s Aboriginal peoples as well as the many contributions they have made to the Canadian identity. This collection has been growing for more than 150 years and continues to have important and valuable elements added to it through the ongoing research activities of its scholars.

    The museum had a humble beginning when, in the mid-1800s, a few archaeological...

  6. The Canadian Museum of Civilization’s Collection of First Peoples’ Artifacts and Art
    (pp. 15-18)
    Andrea Laforet

    The Canadian Museum of Civilization had its beginnings in the mid-1800s, at a time when the geographic boundaries of Canada were expanding east, west, and north, and the character of the land and the peoples who inhabited it for many centuries were being explored by settlers who had come from Europe.

    The first collections representing Aboriginal people were established through the work of the Geological Survey of Canada. Other early collections were made by government officials, missionaries, and others working in areas far from the capital city, Ottawa. After the first Anthropology Division was established in 1910 the museum followed...

  7. First Nations of Canada
    (pp. 21-29)
    Eldon Yellowhorn

    The following discussion attempts to clarify the definitions, categories, and phrases that apply to the cultural complexity of First Nations evident today in Canada.Aborigineis itself a noun derived from the Latin phraseab origine, which means “from the beginning.” In Canada, the phraseAboriginal peoplerefers to the Indians, Inuit, and Métis. Of course, such labels necessarily generalize about these people and imply sameness where there is none.

    If the termAboriginal peopleseems ambiguous, phrases such asNative peopleorIndigenous peopleare no better at illustrating diverse cultures.Nativetypically denotes a condition of birth. People...

  8. First Peoples of Canada: Masterworks from the Canadian Museum of Civilization
    (pp. 31-164)
  9. Index
    (pp. 165-167)