Cathy Kurelek


The quest for self-determination by Aboriginal peoples in Canada and the accompanying need for government officials and the Canadian public to understand Aboriginal peoples is revitalizing anthropological studies. In contrast to traditional research, wherein anthropologists entered the field to record data for academic consumption, it is now necessary for our work to reflect the concerns of the people with whom we are working.

This paper discusses the use of elements from various methodologies during work with the Innu people. It deals with the benefits and limitations in the use of participant observation, a feminist approach, and a participatory research model. The combination of principles from each methodology can avoid the illusion of objectivity in research, which only serves to silence the people studied. Rather it enables a dialogue based on a respect for differences.