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SC Wednesday, October 18, 10 am Speaker: Heidi Bohaker, Title: “Ontario’s Treaties as First Law: Indigenous-Crown Relations and Land Conveyance Agreements”

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October 18, 2023 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Wednesday, October 18, 10 am

Speaker: Heidi Bohaker

Title: “Ontario’s Treaties as First Law: Indigenous-Crown Relations and Land Conveyance Agreements”

Abstract: The word “treaty” in common usage typically refers to an agreement between nations. This is the sense also used when people in Canada talk about the treaties and the treaty relationships between various First Nations and the Government of Canada. However, the wording of treaties signed between the British Crown and First Nations in what is now Ontario takes the form of standard British real estate or land conveyance agreements used in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.  Why is this so? And why are these agreements the subject of so much litigation today? The province of Ontario has a long and rich treaty history, one that is much older that the province itself, and is even older that the arrival of the first non-Indigenous settlers, or even the first non-Indigenous visitors, to these lands. In this presentation, Heidi Bohaker will explain the genesis of these agreements within the legal traditions of the Wendat, Haudenosaunee Confederacy, Mushkegowuk and Anishinaabek peoples and why treaty relationships remain so important and vital today.

Bio: Heidi Bohaker investigates on the history of Indigenous-Crown relations, treaties and federal and provincial government policies toward Indigenous peoples in Canada. She is a Director of the Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History, and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in legal history, treaty history, the history of residential schools in Canada and the dynamics of gender in Canadian history. She has appeared as an expert witness in Restoule v. Canada (2018) and Chippewas of Saugeen First Nation v. Town of South Bruce Peninsula et al. Her 2020 monograph, Doodem and Council Fire: Anishinaabe Governance through Alliance (Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History and the University of Toronto Press), won multiple prizes, including the Erminie Wheeler-Voegelin Book Award by the American Society for Ethnohistory and the Canadian Historical Association’s Political History Book Prize. She is the co-director of GRASAC, the Great Lakes Research Alliance (https://grasac.org), an organization of researchers from Indigenous communities, universities, museums and archives collaborating together to locate, study, and create deeper understandings of Great Lakes arts, languages, identities, territoriality and governance.

The link to register is  https://forms.office.com/r/17q3Pz7f2d

The deadline to register is the Monday before the event at noon. The Zoom link will be sent to registrants only.


October 18, 2023
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
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