Historical Overview: Genocide & Resistance of Indigenous Peoples


The following articles are excellent starting points for learning more about the history behind colonial occupation of indigenous lands of the "Americas", and the resulting indigenous resistance.

* 500 Years of Resistance

      - Reprinted from Oh-Toh-Kin magazine.
        A great primer on 500 years of
        colonialism and the resulting
        indigenous resistance.

graphic by Gord Hill
* Indigenous Autonomy and Revolutionary Resistance - Speech by Amor y Rabia (Love & Rage) representative to the March 1997 Love & Rage Continental Conference. Looks at Mexican indigenous movements as a model for resistance movements. * Confronting Canada's colonial legacy - Theoretical overview of colonialism in "Canada". * Letter from Bruce Clark to Verna Friday * Confederated Native Court Judgement and Reasons - Both are comprehensive overviews of legislative colonialism. * From Wounded Knee to Capitol Hill - "The History, Achievements and Legacy of the American Indian Movement". * In Pursuit of Progress: A Colonial Narrative - Impact of colonialism on the indigenous peoples of the North * After Mabo, What About Aboriginal Sovereignty? - About legal status of sovereigntist movement in "Australia"; many parallels to the situation in North America.

Also see the documents indexed in
Neo-colonialism and global economics



USA on Trial: The International Tribunal on Indigenous Peoples and Oppressed Nations in the United States.
Verdict, book, and video on AIM-sponsored international tribunal held to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Columbus's invasion of America. The tribunal convicted the U.S. government of numerous international crimes against indigenous people, including genocide.

Available from Editorial El Coqui, 1671 N. Claremont, Chicago, IL, USA 60647 or the Puerto Rican Cultural Center in Chicago, tel: (312) 342-8023.

Night-Vision: Illuminating War and Class on the Neo-Colonial Terrain. Butch Lee and Red Rover. 1993: Vagabond Press, 496A Hudson St., Suite E14, New York, NY, USA 10014.
One of the best books around exploring neo-colonialism's implications on political theory and anti-colonial activism.


- Estimated aboriginal population in Canada: Indian 642,000; Metis 152,000; Inuit 42,000.

- Aboriginals as percentage of total Canadian population: 2.7. Percentage of land mass south of Yukon/NWT dedicated to them: less than 0.5.

- US aboriginals as percentage of total population in the United States, excluding Alaska: less than 1. Percentage of US land mass dedicated to them: 3.

- Native people in Canada as percentage of total population by region: Atlantic 1.3; Quebec 1.0; Ontario 1.4; Manitoba 10.6; Saskatchewan 10.5; Alberta 4.9; British Columbia 3.6; Yukon 18.2; Northwest Territories, 62.

- Province with the largest aboriginal population: Ontario, with 160,000 people, about 20 percent of the total native population.

- Percentage of aboriginals younger than 24: 56. Percentage of all Canadians under 24: 34.

- Number of aboriginals living in Canada's cities: 320,000, about 45 percent of the total aboriginal population.

- Number of reserve and native settlements in Canada: 11,000.

- Number of aboriginal language families: 11. Number of languages: 50. Languages used most frequently: Micmac, Montagnais, Cree, Ojibwa, Inuktitut, some Dene.

- Percentage of aboriginals with Grade 9 education or less who have jobs: less than 50. Percentage of aboriginals with university degrees who have jobs: 90.

- Number of aboriginal physicians: about 50 (0.1 percent of all physicians.) Number of registered nurses: about 300 (0.1 percent of all RNs).

- Percentage of federal spending allotted to aboriginal programs in 1991 1992: 3.7. In 1995-96: 4.9.

- Per capita amount spent by all governments on aboriginal people in 1992-93: $15,714. Per capita amount spent on all Canadians: 10,026.

- Amount spent by Ottawa in 1996 on remedial programs for social problems among aboriginal people: $1.7 billion.

- Percentage of aboriginal population over the age of 15 receiving social assistance in 1996: 28.

- Rate of aboriginal incarceration in provincial jails: 11 times that of other Canadians.

- Average earning of employed aboriginal people in 1991: $21,270. Average earning of all Canadians: 27, 880.

- Percentage of all Canadian men unemployed in 1990: 10.1. Of aboriginal men: 27.2.

- Percentage of all Canadian women unemployed in 1990: 10.2. Of aboriginal women: 21.6.

- Number of jobs required to raise the level of aboriginal employment to that of the general population: 80,000

Source: Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples

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