Waban-aki: People from Where the Sun Rises (2006)
1h 44min · Documentary · 22 October 2006
Continuing to take the pulse of First Peoples in Canada, Obomsawin takes us home-to her Abenaki community of Odanak, Quebec. She skilfully weaves the richly textured history of her formerly prosperous basket and canoe making community with an exploration of contemporary Aboriginal identity and official 'status'. The Abenaki once numbered over 50,000 with a territory that stretched across New England, the Maritimes, and southern Quebec. Both their territory and numbers have been drastically reduced through wars and diseases, but their biggest threat today falls between love and legislation. Through the colonial mandate of the Indian Act, First Nations children continue to lose their Aboriginal status when their parents marry outside of their community, threatening their links to their culture, and even their rights to live in their family homes. Through a series of intimate interviews, elders and young people candidly share their stories, grounding us in the realities of their lives and the complex future of all Aboriginal people.
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