Colonialism and State Dependency


Room 232, Leacock Building, CA

Gerald Taiaiake Alfred is a Full Professor in Indigenous Governance Program and in the Department of Political Science at the University of Victoria. He specializes in studies of traditional governance, the restoration of land-based cultural practices, and decolonization strategies.   

Educated at Concordia and Cornell, Taiaiake has lectured at universities and colleges in Canada, the United States, England, and Australia. Taiaiake's current research involves studying the effects of environmental contamination on Indigenous cultural practices, with a special focus on the Mohawk community of Akwesasne. His previous research and consulting work centered on retraditionalization, structural reform, and leadership training for First Nations governments and organizations. He also spent many a number of years as a researcher, writer, negotiator and advisor for First Nations governments in land claims and self-government processes.  

Taiaiake is a Bear Clan Mohawk. He was born in Montréal in 1964 and was raised in the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory.


Since colonial contact an occupation, there have been dramatic changes to the identity, culture, and society of Indigenous peoples of Canada.

In today’s Canadian landscape, what issues do Indigenous people face? How has colonialism impacted their traditions and everyday life, societies, and economy? What have been the successes and breakthroughs? What is the outlook for the future?

The Social Equity and Diversity Education (SEDE) Office’s Indigenous Education Series aims to raise awareness and initiate an exchange of ideas on First Nations, Métis and Inuit topics within the McGill community. The series provides opportunities to explore and examine a variety of issues and promote greater knowledge and understanding about the Indigenous peoples of Canada.

SEDE provides information, education and training to all areas of the University in order to cultivate a respectful, diverse and supportive campus.

This event is in partnership with the Sustainability Projects Fund.


Contact Information

Allan Vicaire
The Social Equity and Diversity Education Office
allan.viciare [at]
Office Phone: