Proposal Title

SESSION 2.1: Incorporating Indigenous Voices: The Struggle for Increased Representation in Jasper National Park

Presentation Type

Individual paper

Location

IB 1020

Start Date

3-5-2019 1:30 PM

End Date

3-5-2019 3:00 PM

Disciplines

Indigenous Education | Other Environmental Sciences | Recreation, Parks and Tourism Administration

Abstract

This thesis focuses on the lack of Indigenous representation in Jasper National Park (JNP) and the negative impacts it has on Indigenous communities and their relationship with JNP management. These representational issues foster the formation and dissemination of problematic Indigenous stereotypes and reinforce pan-Indigenous notions in Jasper and Canada. Relying on Indigenous Methodologies, I conducted semi-structured interviews with members of the Jasper Indigenous Forum (JIF) and JNP management which helped address a gap in knowledge as there are so few scholarly works on this issue, particularly in national parks. The findings from this research clearly indicated that while JNP management and the JIF have some overlapping priorities, they have different levels of understandings about the obstacles each group faces. Unequal power dynamics became evident in this research, which suggests a desire among JNP management to maintain the status quo. The research participants identified several areas of concern: Indigenous histories and cultures presented from non-Indigenous perspectives; a lack of cultural awareness training for JNP staff; the presence of culturally insensitive structures in JNP; inadequate time to meet on issues; and a lack of consultation. These key issues are examined in great detail in an effort to increase culturally appropriate representation in JNP and offer some viable solutions to help reconcile the past and move Indigenous concerns forward in Jasper.

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May 3rd, 1:30 PM May 3rd, 3:00 PM

SESSION 2.1: Incorporating Indigenous Voices: The Struggle for Increased Representation in Jasper National Park

IB 1020

This thesis focuses on the lack of Indigenous representation in Jasper National Park (JNP) and the negative impacts it has on Indigenous communities and their relationship with JNP management. These representational issues foster the formation and dissemination of problematic Indigenous stereotypes and reinforce pan-Indigenous notions in Jasper and Canada. Relying on Indigenous Methodologies, I conducted semi-structured interviews with members of the Jasper Indigenous Forum (JIF) and JNP management which helped address a gap in knowledge as there are so few scholarly works on this issue, particularly in national parks. The findings from this research clearly indicated that while JNP management and the JIF have some overlapping priorities, they have different levels of understandings about the obstacles each group faces. Unequal power dynamics became evident in this research, which suggests a desire among JNP management to maintain the status quo. The research participants identified several areas of concern: Indigenous histories and cultures presented from non-Indigenous perspectives; a lack of cultural awareness training for JNP staff; the presence of culturally insensitive structures in JNP; inadequate time to meet on issues; and a lack of consultation. These key issues are examined in great detail in an effort to increase culturally appropriate representation in JNP and offer some viable solutions to help reconcile the past and move Indigenous concerns forward in Jasper.