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David Lessard

David Lessard, PhD candidate, Anthropology

david [dot] lessard2 [at] mail [dot] mcgill [dot] ca (Email) CV

Project title:Formalization of Identity, the Emergence of a Community and a Diversity of Experiences: The Case of the Washaw Sibi Eeyou

Project Description: I am interested in the way the Washaw Sibi Eeyou members define themselves collectively and the changes that have occurred to these self-definitions. The Washaw Sibi Eeyou Association is an aboriginal organization made of individuals from various aboriginal Cree, Algonquin and Ojibwa communities, claiming for their recognition under the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement as a James Bay Cree community and working on the edification of a village in Quebec for the establishment of the community. I am interested in the way social organization and cohesiveness is maintained in spite, or because, of the current geographical fragmentation of the community. My project focuses on tensions taking place between formal and informal discourses and customary narratives, as well as practices through which the community take form. Both aboriginal and colonial agencies intersect in the process through which the community gradually establishes itself socially and politically. This also results in the muting of potential social and cultural forms that exist, or have existed, within the aboriginal mode of organization.

Research interests: Indigeneity, identity, social organization, youth and generations, history of relations with the state and colonialism.

Geographic Focus: Canadian subarctic, Quebec and Ontario

Main supervisor: Dr. Colin Scott

Publication History:
LESSARD, David. 2011. "Les aspirations pour l'avenir des jeunes cris de la Baie James: Devoir contenter une communauté". in GOYETTE, Martin, Annie PONTBRIAND and CÉLINE BELLOT (dir.). Les transitions à la vie adulte des jeunes en difficulté: Concepts, figures et pratiques. Presses de l'Université du Québec, Montréal.

Previous education:
M.Sc. Anthropology, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada. 
Bac. Anthropology, Université de Montréal, Monrtéal, Canada.