Indigenous recognition: revisiting the recommendations for a First Nations dual-citizenship in Canada
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This thesis explores First Nations peoples’ relationship with the Canadian government and how the issue of citizenship has played into this relationship. This thesis analyses citizenship theory as it relates to First Nations peoples through an examination of prominent theorists of Canadian politics and Indigenous scholars. Arguments for unitarian citizenship, pluralist forms of citizenship and Indigenous nationalism are examined. Issues of participation, identity and self-determination are explored as they relate closely to the debate over the level of inclusion in Canadian citizenship. The Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples recommends a dual-citizenship model, to be implemented by the Canadian government with consultation and input from First Nations. However, this recommendation has not been pursued, and the relationship between First Nations and the Canadian government is as tense as ever. I conclude that a thoughtful re-examination of the RCAP dual-citizenship model is necessary if we are to move towards reconciliation in Canada.