Dalaina Heiberg (University of Chicago, Political Science)
"Canadian Liberal Sovereignty through Territorial Federalism: Illustrations from Francophone and Doukhobor History"
SINCE THE 1970S, MULTICULTURALISM HAS BEEN the guiding political policy of Canada's federal government with respect to diversity. However, in the 1990s, a new political idiom began to emerge in political analyses of Canadian politics: “multinationalism.” In her dissertation, DALAINA HEIBERG examines a focal question for Indigenous scholars and theorists of democracy: What possibilities does a multinational approach offer in terms of enhancing the political freedom of Indigenous peoples and Canadian citizens more broadly? To get at these issues, she explores two cases of non-Indigenous groups – Francophone nationalists and the utopian Doukhobors, both “volunteers” to the Canadian project – and their struggles to achieve space for alternative forms of politics from the Anglo nation-state. These cases, she argues, illustrate the challenges that lie ahead when claims are made on federalism to go beyond making space for its own citizens’ plurality in order to make space for distinct political orders on land simultaneously claimed by the state.