Indigenous Human Rights

Edited by Joyce Green  

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Indigenous rights are generally conceptualized and advocated separately from the human rights framework. The contributors to Indivisible: Indigenous Human Rights, however, deftly and powerfully argue that Indigenous rights are in fact human rights and that the fundamental human rights of Indigenous people cannot be protected without the inclusion of their Indigenous rights, which are suppressed and oppressed by the forces of racism and colonialism. Drawing on a wealth of experience and blending critical theoretical frameworks and a close knowledge of domestic and international law on human rights, the authors in this collection show that settler states such as Canada persist in violating and failing to acknowledge Indigenous human rights. Furthermore, settler states are obligated to respect and animate these rights, despite the evident tensions in political and economic interests between elite capitalists, settler citizens and Indigenous peoples.

“The historic and contemporary challenges faced by Indigenous peoples, be it the tragedy of residential schools, high levels of violence against women, abusive policing, struggles around land and resources, or entrenched poverty are reflective of the disgraceful failure of Canada and other states to uphold human rights. Indivisible is a critical call to governments and Indigenous peoples to take up the indivisible framework of rights protection enshrined in the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.”

— Alex Neve, Amnesty International

“Well written, fast moving, and well researched, this is book is a rich, smart resource for anyone wanting to break down and understand the human rights versus indigenous rights debate, and to move on to more productive conversations about real political and legal change for indigenous peoples.”

— Val Napoleon, University of Victoria

“Have you ever looked back at a point in your life when, had good advice been taken, it would have meant a much better future? This book offers that advice, now. Canadians who want to live well because Indigenous peoples prosper need to read Indivisible.”

— Robert Lovelace, Retired Chief of Ardoch Algonquin First Nation, professor of global studies, Queen’s University


  • Indigenous Human Rights are Indivisible (Joyce Green)
  • Denying Indigenous Human Rights: Colonialism and Rights Discourse in Canada (Joyce Green)
  • Two The Race Bind: Denying Aboriginal Rights in Australia (Maggie Walter)
  • Colonialism Past and Present: Indigenous Human Rights and Canadian Policing (Elizabeth Comack)
  • Indigenous Human Rights and Decolonization (Andrea Smith)
  • McIvor v. Canada: Legislated Patriarchy Meets Aboriginal Women’s Equality Rights (Gwen Brodsky)
  • Confronting Violence: Indigenous Women. Self-Determination and International Human Rights (Rauna Kuokkanen)
  • Victoria’s Secret: How to Make a Population of Prey (Mary Eberts)
  • Free, Prior and Informed Consent: Defending Indigenous Rights in the Global Rush for Resources (Craig Benjamin)
  • The Presumption of Conformity: International Indigenous Human Rights and the Canadian Constitution (Brenda Gunn)
  • Undermining Indigenous Peoples’ Security and Human Rights (Paul Joffe)


  • Joyce Green

    University of Regina

    Joyce Green is professor emerita of political science at the University of Regina. Green’s work focuses on the politics of decolonization in Canada; on identity, human rights and citizenship; and on the way in which sexism, racism and race privilege is encoded in Canadian political culture. She is of English, Ktunaxa and Cree-Scots Métis descent; she is a citizen of the Ktunaxa Nation and a member of Yaq̓it ʔa·knuqⱡiʔit (Tobacco Plains), a member band of the Ktunaxa Nation.

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