Dr. Sheryl Lightfoot awarded SSHRC Insight Development Grant

Dr. Sheryl Lightfoot has been awarded a SSHRC Insight Development Grant for her new project, “The Politics of State Apologies to Indigenous Peoples.” Dr. Lightfoot will conduct a comparative case study analysis of state apologies to Indigenous peoples in three countries: Canada, the United States, and Norway. The study will involve qualitative research on the evolution of apology and its after effects. Questions to be addressed include: When and how are apologies issued from states to Indigenous peoples? What is their political purpose? Do such apologies represent a response by the state to demands from Indigenous peoples, or are they usually a top-down, state-driven initiative? How do Indigenous leaders and activists view official state apologies and what are the gaps of understanding between them and state actors? What other policies (e.q. compensation and/or policy shifts) should accompany official sate apologies in order to enhance Indigenous-state reconciliation? This two-year study will commence in July 2013.