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Aboriginal Residential School System in Canada - Essay Example

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Aboriginal Residential School System in Canada

The Canadian government collaborated with the Catholic, Presbyterian, Anglican and United churches to isolate Aboriginal children from the influence of their parents and culture and integrate them into mainstream society. Aboriginal Residential School System was seen as appropriate places that would separate the aboriginal children from their parents and communities. The children were prevented from exercising anything from their culture including speaking their own languages. Throughout history, these institutions sparked a lot of criticism due to the methods that were used in the acculturation of the children as the administrators sought to kill the Indian in the children. The conflict theory is the best theoretical frame in the examination of how different groups struggle for dominance. This theory highlights how the group, which dominates the others, will institute measures that weaken the belief systems of minority groups. According to the conflict theory, the dominant culture uses this position for the betterment of their interest while at the same time weakening the subordinate group (Andersen & Taylor, 2011). Therefore, from the analysis of the events in Education As We See It, conflict theorists will view the Canadian government working with the churches as representatives of the dominant culture while the aboriginal children are from the subordinate culture in the aboriginal residential educational system. The government as part of the dominant group possessed coercion, authority, and power as the necessary tools that enabled it create the rules for opportunity and success in society. These tools gave the government an upper hand in the determination of the way of life for all citizens while overlooking the cultural practices of aboriginal. Through the eradication of aboriginal culture, the authorities wanted to deny subordinate group the chance to succeed in the multicultural society; therefore, they were able to monopolize power, privilege, and authority (Bartos, 2002) The concept of gendered assumption is the belief that assigns different roles to the different sexes. According to this assumption, men are masculine while women are feminine. These masculine and feminine roles determine the functions of each member of the society. Those that have feminine role have their place in the performance of domestic functions. Given that women are feminine, they are supposed to take care of the household chores in addition to their reproductive roles and childcare. Since men have masculine role in the family, they are the providers and protectors of their wives and children (Kimmel, 2000). Education As We See It depicts gender assumptions seen through the various roles that boys and girls attending Aboriginal Residential School System in Canada were allocated. Administrators divided children in terms of gender then proceeded to assign subjects and duties depending on whether the child was male or female. Girls in the Aboriginal Residential School System in Canada were taught the subjects that emphasized domestic Science that gave them household skills like cooking and sewing. The boys on the other hand were taught apprenticeship skills like blacksmithing and carpentry while at the same time they were also involved in farming and other activities that taught them to be providers of their families. The concept of cultural differences is highlighted in many parts of the film Education As We See It. Cultural differences are the variations in the way a people run their affairs evident in their laws, traditions, and beliefs. The differences can is experienced among different people, societies, countries, and religions. Education As We ...Show more
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Summary

The film Education As We See It presents the Canadian education system’s perception on acculturation of the aboriginals.The film depicts events as they were from the 1870s, which marked the government’s efforts of integration of aboriginal children…
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