21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality

by Bob Joseph

Book, 2018


Indigenous Relations Press (2018), 200 pages


"Based on a viral article, 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act is the essential guide to understanding the legal document and its repercussion on generations of Indigenous peoples, written by a leading cultural sensitivity trainer. The Indian Act, after 141 years, continues to shape, control, and constrain the lives and opportunities of Indigenous peoples, and is at the root of many lasting stereotypes. Bob Joseph's book comes at a key time in the reconciliation process, when awareness from both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities is at a crescendo. Joseph explains how Indigenous peoples can step out from under the Indian Act and return to self-government, self-determination, and self-reliance-and why doing so would result in a better country for every Canadian. He dissects the complex issues around truth and reconciliation, and clearly demonstrates why learning about the Indian Act's cruel, enduring legacy is essential for the country to move toward true reconciliation."--… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member leslico
Amazing and alarming book, every Canadian should definitely read this!
LibraryThing member lamour
This is an excellent guide to the background of the Canadian Indian Act and the consequences its implementation had for Canada's Indigenous people. Joseph is a Status Indian who has written this very readable brief guide to the issues and suggestions on how to improve how our government can rectify
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its polices towards native people and how to eliminate racism towards Indigenous people in our institutions and by our citizens.
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LibraryThing member mjperry
This small book is an important read for descendants of settlers in Canada. It explains the history of cultural conflict where one culture believes itself to be superior to the other, is determined to eradicate any trace of the other culture, and in fact, in many cases eradicate not just the
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culture, but the people themselves.

I read this book in a discussion group and I would recommend others do the same. It leads to some passionate discussion, self-revelation and understanding of present inequities and injustices.
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LibraryThing member LynnB
Personally, I didn't learn much about the Indian Act that I didn't already know. Which isn't a bad thing...there should be more Canadians who understand the extent of Colonialism, as well as its ongoing effects. The examples and explanations of various Indian Act provisions is well written and an
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excellent reference.

The parts of the book I gained the most from dealt with challenges in dismantling the Indian Act. I also got a better understanding of why some First Nations are leery of doing so. I enjoyed the chronology of residential schools and finally read the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

A very important book!
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BC and Yukon Book Prizes (Finalist — 2019)


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