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Friends and strangers : experience and commonality in a James Bay town

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Friends and strangers : experience and commonality in a James Bay town

Leclerc, Nancy (2001) Friends and strangers : experience and commonality in a James Bay town. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

This thesis, based on three months of fieldwork in 1998, is a study of inter-cultural friendships between Native and non-Native residents of Chisasibi, Quebec in which I examine the factors that hinder and/or enable friendships to form between individuals of different cultural backgrounds. I describe how, despite historical and political tensions that are a part of the larger context of Native/non-Native relations in Canada, individuals are able to establish friendships based on shared social networks and experiences, age and common interests; in particular, popular youth culture (beer, soccer, rock music and so forth). I employ the concepts of cultural and social systems, as delineated by Gary Witherspoon (1975) and the notion of habitus as explained by Pierre Bourdieu (1990). The field methods used in gathering data followed Jean-Guy Goulet's (1998) experiential approach where personal interaction is considered as the primary means for obtaining knowledge. Data was derived both from discussions with Native and non-Native residents of Chisasibi and from my own experiences in relating to people in different social situations in the community. The primary goal of the thesis is to help open channels of communication between Native and non-Native Canadians. The ethnographic portion of this work is therefore written in narrative form to explore a form of ethnography that is reflexive and humanistic and that promotes the ideals of autonomy and sharing that are valued by members of my host community.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Sociology and Anthropology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Leclerc, Nancy
Pagination:vi, 188 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Theses (M.A.)
Program:Sociology and Anthropology
Date:2001
Thesis Supervisor(s):Cole, Sally
ID Code:1603
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 13:20
Last Modified:08 Dec 2010 10:21
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