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How a People Live

  • Directed by Lisa Jackson
  • Vancouver/British Columbia/Canada, 2013, 60 mins.

VISITING ARTIST—The Gwa’sala and the ‘Nakwaxda’xw First Nations people lived as two distinct groups along Canada’s northwest coast. In 1964, the Canadian government forcibly relocated them from their traditional territories to the Tsulquate reserve near Port Hardy on Vancouver Island and burned their villages. Candid and moving interviews, striking archival footage—including their early contact with Franz Boas and Edward S. Curtis—and a visit to their stunning homelands portray a journey of healing. Jackson brings to life the story of a people known for their theatrical dances, strong connection to the land, and the strength that enabled them to overcome incredible hardships.

Appears in: Northwest Tracking

Genres: Documentary

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Evocative and haunting, this performance captured conveys the brutality of violence against Canada’s indigenous women.