Great Plains Studies, Center for



Lee-Ann Martin

Date of this Version

Fall 2012


Great Plains Quarterly 32:4 (Fall 2012).


Copyright © 2012 Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska.


The recent history of museums and Indigenous peoples has developed along diverging lines in Canada and the United States. In Canada, the controversy around The Spirit Sings: Artistic Traditions of Canada's First Peoples, an exhibition organized for the 1988 Olympics in Calgary, Alberta, provided the impetus for the Task Force on Museums and First Peoples which, in turn, sparked subsequent debates surrounding museological policies and practices over the past twenty years. Ruth Phillips locates this exhibition as the point of departure for the "postcolonial project" that has informed subsequent museum reform in Canada.

Thoroughly articulated with characteristic rigor, Phillips's collected readings will provide a wealth of information and analysis for scholars and students. The book is divided into four sections, each representing aspects of the history of "contestation, innovation and change" defining the relationships between museums and Indigenous communities since 1967.