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Decolonization & Anti-Racism

In support of UBC's Indigenous Strategic Plan (ISP) this guide assists in finding and facilitating decolonial & anti-racist research. Here you will find key resources, search strategies, & additional open access information sources.

Decolonizing Citations

In this session, learn more about “citational politics,” the existing templates for citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers, and about the current initiatives at X̱wi7x̱wa to further legitimize citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers in academia.


"A number of Indigenous feminists and other scholars of colour have advocated powerfully for a more mindful and ethical consideration of our citational practices in academia. I think here especially of the work of Audra Simpson (Mohawk) and Jodi Byrd (Chickasaw), Sara Ahmed's feministkilljoys blog, and the Citation Practices Challenge by Eve Tuck (Unangax), K. Wayne Yang, and Rubén Gaztambide-Fernández—and especially that we not continue to replicate the closed circuit of white heteropatriarchy in affirming the same group of voices over and over again." (From Why Indigenous Literatures Matter by Daniel Heath Justice).

Citing Elders & Knowledge Keepers

Introduction

The official MLA and APA citation style guides do not have guidelines for citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers. 

NorQuest College has developed the following templates for citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers (CC BY-NC 4.0) in the spirit of wahkôhtowin and reconciliation, and we thank them for sharing their template.

For information on the development of these templates and how to use them in practice, please see:

Lorisia MacLeod. "More Than Personal Communication: Templates for Citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers." KULA: Knowledge Creation, Dissemination, and Preservation Studies 5, no. 1 (2021). https://doi.org/10.18357/kula.135


APA Style

Unlike other personal communications, Elders and Knowledge Keepers should be cited in-text and in the References list.

In-text citation:

The in-text citation should follow APA guidelines for formatting in-text citations for paraphrasing and direct quotes. Include the Elder or Knowledge Keeper's last name and the year of communication. For example: 

Delores Cardinal described the nature of the... (2004).

OR

The nature of the place was... (Cardinal, 2004).

Corresponding References list entry format:

Last name, First initial., Nation/Community. Treaty Territory if applicable. Where they live if applicable. Topic/subject of communication if applicable. personal communication. Month Date, Year.

For example: Cardinal, D., Goodfish Lake Cree Nation. Treaty 6. Lives in Edmonton. Oral teaching. personal communication. April 4, 2004.


MLA Style

Unlike most other personal communications, Elders and Knowledge Keepers should be cited in-text and in the Works Cited list. 

In-text:

The in-text citation should follow MLA guidelines for formatting in-text citations for paraphrasing and direct quotes. Include the Elder or Knowledge Keeper's last name. For example:

Delores Cardinal described the nature of the...

OR

The nature of the place was... (Cardinal).

Corresponding Works Cited list entry:

Last name, First name., Nation/Community. Treaty Territory if applicable. City/Community they live in if applicable. Topic/subject of communication if applicable. Date Month Year. 

For Example: Cardinal, Delores., Goodfish Lake Cree Nation. Treaty 6. Lives in Edmonton. Oral teaching. 4 April 2004.


Note: If you would like to approach an Elder or Knowledge Keeper for teachings, remember to follow protocol or if you are unsure what their protocol is, please ask them ahead of time.


Chicago Manual of Style

Work is underway to develop guidelines for citing Elders and Knowledge Keepers with Chicago Manual of Style. Please check back for updates.

General Resources - Online