Cinema and Representation

This theme focuses on the ways in which Aboriginal peoples have been represented in NFB documentaries. Film excerpts illustrate how the representation of Aboriginal peoples has evolved over the last fifty years.

Excerpts


Caribou Hunters

Caribou Hunters 1


César's Bark Canoe/César et son Canot d'écorce

César's Bark Canoe/César et son Canot d'écorce 1


Circle of the Sun

Circle of the Sun 2


The Other Side of the Ledger: An Indian View of the Hudson's Bay Company

The Other Side of the Ledger: An Indian View of the Hudson's Bay Company 2


Totem: The Return of the G'psgolox Pole

Totem: The Return of the G'psgolox Pole 1

Totem: The Return of the G'psgolox Pole

2003, Director: Cardinal, Gil

excerpt 1      4 min 58 s


 


Description In the last few decades, Aboriginal communities have been committed to reclaiming artefacts taken without consent for museum collections worldwide. Métis filmmaker Gil Cardinal reveals the steadfast determination of the Haisla to regain ownership of the G’psgolox totem pole taken from their Kitamaat community in northwestern British Columbia by the Swedish in 1929.
Questions

1. What legal and ethical arguments were put forward regarding the repatriation of the G’psgolox pole? Explore both perspectives; that of the Swedish government and the Haisla and Henaaksiala people of Kitamaat, British Columbia.

2. What analogy making reference to the preservation of a Swedish warship does Gerald Amos of Kitamaat use to further the cause of repatriating the totem pole? Why was this strategy successful?


About This Film

Short Description

In 1929, the G’psgolox, a funerary totem pole belonging to the Haisla people, was cut down and transported to Europe. It was discovered in a Swedish museum in 1991. The film recounts the efforts of members of the Haisla Nation from the village of Kitamaat to recuperate the sacred object.


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