White Settler Dysconsciousness and Ethnicity – Constructing innocence and non-complicity among Mennonites and other white settlers in Canada

  • Author / Creator
    Nikkel, Jacob
  • This thesis draws on the concept of white settler dysconsciousness, and explores how white settler dysconsciousness is complicated by ethnicity, with the goal of expanding on understandings of whiteness and settler colonialism in Canada. White settler dysconsciousness is an uncritical and dissonant form of consciousness. It is produced through a constant and complex dynamic of self-interested misunderstanding and rationalization, and functions to move white settlers to a position of innocence and non-complicity, regarding the benefits white settlers derive from the historical and ongoing oppression of Indigenous people and other people of colour. The central argument of the thesis is that ethnicity plays an important role in constructing the myriad forms of white settler dysconsciousness present among white settlers. I draw on literature in the fields of settler colonial studies, critical race and whiteness studies, and critical Indigenous studies, as well as the example of Mennonite settlers in the prairies in Canada, to support this work.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2019
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Arts
  • DOI
  • License
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