Thou Shalt Forget: Indigenous sovereignty, resistance and the production of cultural oblivion in Canada

Pierrot Ross-Tremblay
15 November 2019
229 × 152 × 20 mm
312 pp
Paperback: 978-1-912250-09-7
PDF: 978-1-912250-42-4
What is ‘cultural oblivion’ and ‘psychological colonialism’, and how are they affecting the capacity of Indigenous Peoples in Canada to actively resist systematic and territorial oppression by the state?
Following a decade-long research project, this new book by Pierrot Ross-Tremblay examines the production of oblivion among his own community, the Essipiunnuat [or, ‘People of the Brook Shells River’] and the relationship between a colonial imperative to forget. The book illustrates how the ‘cultural oblivion’ of vulnerable minority communities is a critical human rights issue but also asks us to reflect upon both the role of the state and the local elite in creating and warping our perception and understanding of history.
On almost every page of 'Thou Shalt Forget' Pierrot Ross Tremblay reveals himself as someone deeply engaged (and enraged) with what is happening to indigenous peoples today. Tremblay joins several important scholars such as Taiaiake Alfred, Val Napoleon and the late Vine Deloria on shining a light on the paradoxes of indigenous sovereignty in the face of ongoing colonialism. He is one of the few scholars defending an indigenous perspective in Quebec and bringing it into wider public debate.
-Colin Samson (University of Essex)
List of figures 
1. The Essipiunnuat, the Salmon War and cultural oblivion 
2. The sources of war: colonialism and the emergence of collective agency 
3. Capturing who we were: heroic postures in tragic circumstances 
4. Stories on the transformative experience of war: from self-empowerment
to a metaphysics of domination 
5. The Essipiunnuat’s actuality in light of the past 
Postface | Heirs of oblivion: leaders’ interiority as a public issue
Annex 1 – Methodological notes