Mapping, Language and Stories in Deline

Regions: Sahtu Settlement Area

Tags: social sciences, anthropology, linguistics, language, oral history

Principal Investigator: Simmons, Deborah L (21)
Licence Number: 14909
Organization: Native Studies, University of Manitoba
Licenced Year(s): 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
Issued: Apr 14, 2011

Objective(s): To research Dene stories and perspectives on the role of stories in health, healing and governance and to develop a proposal for future research on Dene language of place.

Project Description: The objectives of this research project are to:
1. research Dene stories and perspectives on the role of stories in health, healing and governance; and
2. develop a proposal for future research on Dene language of place.

The research follows the participatory method established by the Deline Uranium Team and Deline Knowledge Project. Déline governance will ensure that the research meets agreed-upon objectives benefiting the community; that Déline, Northwest Territories and university research guidelines are respected; and that the intellectual property rights of Déline participants are protected. The community research team play a key role in research design, analysis and communication of results. Research procedures include surveys, focus group meetings, and participant-observation at cultural events. Research tools consist of an audio recorder, still camera, a digital mapping tool, and possibly a video camera. Sarah Gordon will be conducting research on stories, health and healing with the Deline Knowledge Project toward completion of doctoral dissertation requirements and Indiana University, as approved by her university ethics board.

This is a participatory research program initiated by the Deline First Nation community as part of a vision for research, education and capacity-building for self-government. Community researchers are provided with training, and community members participate in structuring every phase of the research, including project design, implementation, analysis and education activities. Communications products and community presentations related to the research process and outcomes are provided on a regular basis, and activities in the school ensure that students are educated about research process and results. The aim is to understand how Dene knowledge and stories can be used to address social and environmental change in the present and future.

Within the community, research process and results will be communicated in various forms depending on community wishes: by community radio, written reports, oral reports and public presentations, newsletters and/or booklets, on the web, on multimedia CDs. Communication to the broader public is by permission of the Deline First Nation, including conferences and plain language and academic publications co-authored with the community research team.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from April 14, 2011 to December 31, 2011.