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ERIC Number: EJ959917
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 24
ISSN: ISSN-1326-0111
Education as Healing: How Urban Aboriginal Men Described Post-Secondary Schooling as Decolonising
Restoule, Jean-Paul
Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, v34 p123-131 2005
This paper relates findings from learning circles held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with urban Aboriginal men. The purpose of the circles was to determine how an Aboriginal cultural identity is formed in urban spaces. Education settings were mentioned by the research participants as a significant contribution to their cultural identity development. Participants described elementary and secondary school experiences as lacking in Aboriginal inclusion at best or as racist. In contrast to these earlier experiences, participants described their post-secondary education as enabling them to work on healing or decolonising themselves. Specific strategies for universities to contribute to individual decolonising journeys are mentioned. A university that contributes to decolonising and healing must provide space for Aboriginal students where they feel culturally safe. The students must have access to cultural knowledge and its keepers, such as elders. Their teachers must offer Indigenous course content and demonstrate respect and love for their students. Courses must be seen to be relevant to Indigenous people in their decolonising process and use teaching styles that include humour and engender a spirit of community in the classroom. In particular, Indigenous language courses are important to Aboriginal students.
University of Queensland. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit, Brisbane, Queensland, 4072, Australia. Tel: +61-7-3365-1969; Fax: +61-7-3365-6855; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada (Toronto)