Author: LeBourdais, Leslie
In the Secwépemc Nation (southern interior of British Columbia), cultural heritage management is being practiced under the jurisdiction of the provincial government with little recognition of indigenous rights, laws, or values. This study investigated and sought solutions to understanding indigenous heritage management perspectives and priorities grounded in indigenous legal traditions with respect to identifying and managing cultural landscapes. To achieve this objective the research was guided by two primary questions:1) How do Secwépemc define and identify Secwépemc cultural landscapes?; and 2) How can Secwépemc use this knowledge to develop and implement heritage management in accordance with Secwépemc Law? Interviews were conducted with representative knowledge keepers from eight southern Secwépemc communities: 1) Adams Lake Indian Band; 2) Bonaparte Indian Band; 3) Shuswap Indian Band; 4) Simpcw First Nation; 5) Skeetchestn Indian Band; 6) Splatsín First Nation; 7) Tk'emlúps te Secwépemc; and 8) Whispering Pines/Clinton Indian Band. The semi-structured interviews were conducted using web-based digital technology Zoom, transcribed using Otter AI software and analyzed using qualitative research software NVivo. The analysis of the interview data allowed for the identification of themes relevant to the research questions as well as additional themes based on the unique perspectives of the interview participants. The interview results together with a review of pertinent heritage legislation, literature and ethnographic resources contributed to a list of recommendations for the development of a new strategy for effective heritage management that respects and recognizes Indigenous rights and legal traditions in Secwepemcúĺecw [Secwépemc ancestral lands].
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Thesis advisor: Nicholas, George
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