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Ampersand Indigenous Books

Beyond Rights
The Nisg_a’a Final Agreement and the Challenges of Modern Treaty Relationships
By (author): Carole Blackburn



Product Form:


Form detail:

Hardcover , Sewn


Dec 15, 2021
$89.95 CAD


9in x 6 x 0.7 in | 440 gr

Page Count:

202 pages


5 b&w photos
UBC Press
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Indigenous Studies
  • Short Description

Beyond Rights examines the legal, political, and cultural implications of the ground-breaking process of negotiating the Nisga’a treaty.

Beyond Rights examines the legal, political, and cultural implications of the ground-breaking process of negotiating the Nisg_a’a treaty.

In 2000, the Nisg_a’a treaty marked the culmination of over one hundred years of Nisg_a’a people protesting, petitioning, litigating, and negotiating for recognition of their rights. Beyond Rights explores this ground-breaking achievement and its impact. The Nisg_a’a were trailblazers in gaining Supreme Court recognition of unextinguished Aboriginal title, and the treaty marked a turning point in the relationship between First Nations and provincial and federal governments. Using this treaty as a pivotal case study, Carole Blackburn analyzes treaty making as a way to address historical injustice and to achieve contemporary legal recognition, and explores the possibilities for a distinct Indigenous citizenship in a settler state.

Carole Blackburn is an associate professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia and the author of Harvest of Souls: Jesuit Missions and Colonialism in North America, 1632–1650. She has been researching the Nisg_a’a Final Agreement since 1999, conducting interviews and engaging in participant observation with treaty negotiators, politicians, bureaucrats, Nisg_a’a citizens, government workers, and lawyers for the province, the federal government, and the Nisg_a’a.

Beyond Rights rejects one-sided assessments of modern treaty agreements and provides a nuanced view of their generative potential as well as their inherent limits. It will undoubtedly become a major reference on this topic.

- Martin Papillon, professor of political science, Université de Montréal

Tracing the Nisg_a’a’s journey to achieving a comprehensive modern treaty, Carole Blackburn reveals a contested landscape of treaty making and implementation in Canada, where government machineries remain profoundly unchanged by commitments to reconciliation.

- Stephanie Irlbacher-Fox, principal investigator, Modern Treaties Implementation Research Project, and author of Finding Dahshaa

Carole Blackburn provides a sophisticated analysis of the Nisg_a’a land claim and self-government agreement. This is an important and timely book.

- Paul Nadasdy, professor of anthropology and American Indian and Indigenous studies, Cornell University

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