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Colin Scott

Associate Professor

Ph.D McGill University, 1983

Scott, Colin, Dr.

Stephen Leacock Building, Room 734
855 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, H3A 2T7

Tel.: 514-398-4291
Fax: 514-398-7476

colin [dot] scott [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)



Office Hours

Sabbatical Leave 2013-2014

Research Interests

One of my major research interests has been the way that social metaphors of respect, reciprocity and communication among hunting, fishing and gathering peoples serve as paradigms for environmental knowledge. How do indigenous cosmologies shape and conjoin the ethical and instrumental aspects of social practice for livelihood and resource management, and how are they reciprocally shaped by this experience? A second major interest has been the land and sea tenure and resource management arrangements that are both the context for, and the product of, ecological knowledge. I have pursued these interests among coastal James Bay Cree of northern Quebec since 1976, and among Torres Strait Islanders in northern Queensland since 1996. My research in both regions tracks the evolution of indigenous land and sea rights, as state governments, metropolitan developers and indigenous peoples make competing claims for ownership and jurisdiction. I also examine the bearing of ethnological notions of cultural identity, tradition, continuity and change on the discursive restructuring of rights.

Representative Publications

Books & Edited Works:

Forthcoming   Same Flesh, Same Spirit: A Cree Ecology of Respect and Practical Knowledge.
2004 (ed.) Propriété, territorialité et identité politique, Special Issue, Recherches Amérindiennes au Québec 34(3).
2001 (ed.) Aboriginal Autonomy and Development in Northern Quebec and Labrador.Vancouver: UBC Press.

Journal Articles and Book Chapters:

In press (C. Scott and M. Mulrennan) “Reconfiguring Mare Nullius: Indigenous Sea Rights and the Divergence of Domestic and International Norms.” In Mario Blaser, Ravi de Costa and William Coleman, eds. Indigenous Peoples and Autonomy: Insights for a Global Age. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.
In press “James Bay Cree.” In Garrick Bailey, vol. ed., W.C. Sturtevant, general ed. Handbook of North American Indians, vol. 2, Contemporary Issues. Washington: Smithsonian Institution.
2006 “Spirit and Practical Knowledge in the Person of the Bear among Wemindji Cree Hunters.” Ethnos 71(1):51-66.
2005 “Co-management and the Politics of Aboriginal Consent to Resource Development : the Agreement Concerning a New Relationship between le Gouvernement du Québec and the Crees of Québec (2002).” In M. Murphy, ed. Canada: the State of Federation 2003. Reconfiguring Aboriginal-State Relations. Montreal/Kingston: McGill-Queen’s Press. Pp. 133-163.
2005 (Scott, C. and J. Morrison) Frontières et territories: mode de tenure des terres des Cris de l’Est dans la region frontalière Québec/Ontario – II – Reconstruction et renouveau. Recherches Amérindiennes au Québec 35(1):41-56.
2004 (Colin Scott and James Morrison) “Frontières et territoires : mode de tenure des terres des Cris de l’Est dans la région frontalière Québec/Ontario – I – Crise et effondrement.” In C. Scott, ed. Propriété, territorialité et identité politique, special issue, Recherches Amérindiennes au Québec 34(3):23-43.
2004 '"Our Feet are on the Land, but our Hands are in the Sea:' Knowing and Caring for Marine Territory at Erub, Torres Strait." In Richard Davis, ed. Woven Histories, Dancing Lives: Torres Strait Islander Identity, Culture and History. Canberra: Aboriginal Studies Press. Pp. 259-270.
2000 (Mulrennan, M. and C. Scott) “Mare Nullius: Indigenous Rights in Saltwater Environments” Development and Change 31(3):681-708.
1999 (Scott, C. and M. Mulrennan) “Land and Sea Tenure at Erub, Torres Strait: Property, Sovereignty and the Adjudication of Cultural Continuity.” Oceania 70(2):146-176.
1996 "Science for the West, Myth for the Rest? The Case of James Bay Cree Knowledge Construction.” In Laura Nader, ed. Naked Science: Anthropological Inquiries into Boundaries, Power and Knowledge. London: Routledge. Pp. 69-86.