Doodem and Council Fire: Anishinaabe Governance through Alliance

By Heidi Bohaker

© 2020

Combining socio-legal and ethnohistorical studies, this book presents the history of doodem, or clan identification markings, left by Anishinaabe on treaties and other legal documents from the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries. These doodems reflected fundamental principles behind Anishinaabe governance that were often ignored by Europeans, who referred to Indigenous polities in terms of tribe, nation, band, or village – classifications that failed to fully encompass longstanding cultural traditions of political authority within Anishinaabe society.

Making creative use of natural history, treaty pictographs, and the Ojibwe language as an analytical tool, Doodem and Council Fire delivers groundbreaking insights into Anishinaabe law. The author asks not only what these doodem markings indicate, but what they may also reveal through their exclusions. The book also ooutlines the continuities, changes, and innovations in Anishinaabe governance through the concept of council fires and the alliances between them. Original and path-breaking, Doodem and Council Fire offers a fresh approach to Indigenous history, presenting a new interpretation grounded in a deep understanding of the nuances and distinctiveness of Anishinaabe culture and Indigenous traditions.

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Product Details

  • Series: Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 304 pages
  • Illustrations: 34
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
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SKU# SP003685

  • AVAILABLE NOV 2020

    From: $48.75

    Regular Price: $65.00

    ISBN 9781442647312
  • AVAILABLE NOV 2020

    From: $48.75

    Regular Price: $65.00

Quick Overview

Providing rare insights into the doodem tradition and the concept of council fires, this book explores Indigenous law and the Anishinaabe’s holistic approach to governance, territoriality, family, and kinship structures.

Doodem and Council Fire: Anishinaabe Governance through Alliance

By Heidi Bohaker

© 2020

Combining socio-legal and ethnohistorical studies, this book presents the history of doodem, or clan identification markings, left by Anishinaabe on treaties and other legal documents from the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries. These doodems reflected fundamental principles behind Anishinaabe governance that were often ignored by Europeans, who referred to Indigenous polities in terms of tribe, nation, band, or village – classifications that failed to fully encompass longstanding cultural traditions of political authority within Anishinaabe society.

Making creative use of natural history, treaty pictographs, and the Ojibwe language as an analytical tool, Doodem and Council Fire delivers groundbreaking insights into Anishinaabe law. The author asks not only what these doodem markings indicate, but what they may also reveal through their exclusions. The book also ooutlines the continuities, changes, and innovations in Anishinaabe governance through the concept of council fires and the alliances between them. Original and path-breaking, Doodem and Council Fire offers a fresh approach to Indigenous history, presenting a new interpretation grounded in a deep understanding of the nuances and distinctiveness of Anishinaabe culture and Indigenous traditions.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 304 pages
  • Illustrations: 34
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
  • Author Information

    Heidi Bohaker is an associate professor in the Department of History at the University of Toronto.
  • Table of contents

    Preface

    Introduction 

    1. The Doodem Tradition 

    2. Family in All Four Directions 

    3. Anishinaabe Constitutionalism 

    4. Governance in Action 

    5. Doodem in the Era of Settler Colonialism 

    Conclusion 

    Bibliography

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