Thu, Mar 07|
Heritage Chats - Indigenous People and the "Good War"
The Indigenous experience during the Second World War.
Time & Location
Mar 07, 2024, 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Chilliwack Museum, 45820 Spadina Ave, Chilliwack, BC V2P 1T3, Canada
About the event
The Second World War is largely remembered in Canada as the 'Good War', a nostalgic and often simplified narrative of the country's war experience. But what happens to wartime stories that don't mesh with the dominant collective memory? For the most part they are forced to the margins or forgotten. Such was the case for Indigenous people's war service and home front contributions during the Second World War. Only in the last few decades have Canadians begun to listen to the stories of First Nations, Metis and Inuit people about their war experiences, raising the profile of the service and sacrifice of Indigenous veterans, addressing their grievances over unequal access to veterans' benefits, and challenging the boundaries of the 'Good War'.
R. Scott Sheffield is an Associate Professor of History at the University of the Fraser Valley who spent the bulk of his career researching Indigenous military service and he is the author of The Red Man’s on the Warpath: The Image of the ‘Indian’ and the Second World War (UBC Press, 2004), and (with Noah Riseman) Indigenous Peoples and the Second World War: The Politics, Experiences and Legacies of War in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand (Cambridge U Press, 2019), as well as numerous articles and book chapters. His current research explores British Columbia’s home front during the Second World War, especially the role of community in mediating British Columbians’ experience of total war.