17 May 2017

Cultural appropriation is a controversial issue, and a recent opinion column in Write Magazine, published by the Writers Union of Canada, has sparked a debate. In the article ran at the front of the issue, the editor declared he didn’t believe in cultural appropriation. 2014 scholar Aaron Mills, a member of the Bear Clan Anishinaabe from Couchiching First Nation, weighed in on the subject in an interview with The Globe and Mail this week following his Walrus Talk, We Desire a Better Country. Mills describes how he considered pulling out of the talk when Walrus editor Jonathan Kay defended the Write Magazine’s column, but ultimately decided to use the occasion to address the issue. Mills disagrees deeply with the opinions expressed in the original opinion column. He has extended an invitation to those defending cultural appropriation to visit Turtle Lodge in Manitoba and sit down with himself and elders to discuss the issue.  

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Aaron Mills

Aaron is examining the Anishnaabe legal tradition and how a revival of Indigenous legal orders will help Canadians to better understand Aboriginal issues.

2014 Scholars