Home and Native Land: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Ontario Grade 7 History Curriculum




Clausing, Hayley

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



A narrative of denial and ignorance of colonial history is pervasive in Canadian school curriculum. Generations of Canadians children learn about history without adequate understanding of Indigenous peoples and of the negative impact of colonialism. Drawing on Indigenous and critical race theories, this research study applied a critical discourse analysis to explore how historical narratives are (re)circulated in school history curriculum. Using the Ontario Grade 7 history curriculum and two history textbooks, the information that is currently being presented to Grade 7 students in Ontario history classes was analyzed. The study found that themes of denial, ignorance, Euro-centrism, racialized sexism and White settler colonial hegemony are pervasive in the history curriculum and textbooks, while information regarding distinct Indigenous peoples and their nations, their histories, and their contributions to Canadian history, are largely absent. These findings highlight implications for curriculum reform and the need for anti- racist, decolonizing pedagogical and curricular approaches.



colonialism, pedagogy, curriculum, racialized ignorance, Indigenous, Whiteness