Indigenous People’s Perspectives on their Own Histories

Posted on Monday, January 31, 2022

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Building Connections: Mobilizing Indigenous Histories for Social Change

Join us for the next event in the series Building Connections: Mobilizing Indigenous Histories for Social Change for a presentation featuring Christian Coocoo, Coordinator of Cultural Services for the Atikamekw Nation Council, David Gascon, Vice-principal of Nikanik Secondary School, and Daviken Studnicki-Gizbert, Associate Professor of History at McGill University. In this conversation, our guests will focus on the challenges of creating the Kiskinohamasowin Atisokana curriculum and will elaborate its learning objectives.

Date: February 16, 2022 

Time: 3:00 - 4:30 PM 

Registration required

Event Description:

This presentation will focus on the creation of an Atikamekw social studies curriculum known as the Kiskinohamasowin Atisokana program, taught at the primary and secondary levels. The objective of this program is to offer the Atikamekw youth an opportunity to better know the realities of their nation and those of other peoples. The first year of the Atisokana program is currently taught to secondary one students in Atikamekw secondary schools in the communities of Wemotaci and Manawan in Northern Québec. Our speakers will outline the challenges encountered in the preparation of the program and the pedagogical choices that were made as a result.


Christian Coocoo is originally from the Atikamekw community of Wemotaci, Quebec. Trained in anthropology at Laval University in Quebec City, he is the Coordinator of Cultural Services at the Atikamekw Nation Council since 1998. He works actively for the valorization and the perpetuation of the culture of his nation. He initiates and coordinates the documentation, transfer and outreach activities on the history, knowledge and traditional ways of the Atikamekw. He has also been collaborating for several years on various research projects with organizations and researchers from several universities.

David Gascon is currently the Vice-Principal at Nikanik High School in the Atikamekw community of Wemotaci. He was a secondary school social studies teacher and has completed a DESS in school leadership and management, in which he studied the impacts of the integration of Indigenous knowledge and pedagogy in schools in Indigenous communities. He is currently the coordinator of the Kiskinohamasowin Atisokana program working committee.

Daviken Studnicki-Gizbert teaches environmental, Latin American and global history at McGill University in Montréal. His research has examined early capitalist trade in the Iberian Atlantic, the  history of resource extraction in Mexico, and the contemporary Canadian mining industry in Latin America. He is currently engaged in collaborative history and cartography projects with the Congreso Ngäbé, Buglé y Campesino de la Región Norte de Santa Fé (Panama) and the Conseil de la Nation Atikamekw (Québec).

The series is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Institute of Indigenous Research and Studies and the Faculties of Education and of Arts at the University of Ottawa. It is organized in collaboration with the History in Canada: First Peoples’ Perspectives project initiated by the Cégep de l'Outaouais, the Indigenous Affairs and the KitiganZibi First Nation Cultural Education Centre.

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