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Archaeological Anthropology

Totem: The University of Western Ontario Journal of Anthropology

2013

Wilderness

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False Frontiers: Archaeology And The Myth Of The Canadian Wilderness, Joshua Dent Apr 2013

False Frontiers: Archaeology And The Myth Of The Canadian Wilderness, Joshua Dent

Totem: The University of Western Ontario Journal of Anthropology

Terra nullius provided a, now defunct, legal allowance for colonial activities in North America. No longer widely used, the concept persists in the widespread use of the term wilderness. Inferring that the Canadian landscape is largely unaltered, pathless, and without attached meaning, wilderness negates the creation and maintenance of Indigenous landscapes. The myth that much of the Canadian landscape consists of pristine and untouched wilderness is perpetuated by several aspects of Canadian society: the natural resource industry, environmentalists, wilderness tourism, and Canadian nationalism. Each of these areas benefits from or exploits in some way, the concept of wilderness. Archaeology, through ...