Residential Schools and Reconciliation: Canada Confronts its History

Book, 2017, 348 pp
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Since the 1980s, successive Canadian institutions and federal governments as well as Christian churches have attempted to grapple with the malignant legacy of residential schooling through official apologies, the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).

In Residential Schools and Reconciliation, Miller tackles and explains these institutional responses to Canada's residential school legacy. Analysing archival material and interviews with former students, politicians, bureaucrats, church officials, and the Chief Commissioner of the TRC, Miller reveals a major obstacle to achieving reconciliation - the inability of Canadians at large to overcome their flawed, overly positive understanding of their country's history.

This unique, timely, and provocative work asks Canadians to accept that the root of the problem was Canadians like them in the past who acquiesced to aggressively assimilative policies.

"J.R. Miller conceives of reconciliation as an ongoing consideration of how we relate to one another when we share our interpretations of Canadian history. Residential Schools and Reconciliation’s contribution is substantial in that it challenges all Canadians to think about what reconciliation can be." - Jonathan Anuik, Faculty of Education, University of Alberta

"J.R. Miller has done it again: a cogent, fair-minded analysis of a significant moment in Canada's hesitant and bumpy journey to truth and reconciliation. Few scholars have done more to enlighten us about this critical relationship." - Bob Rae, Victoria University; School of Governance and Public Policy, University of Toronto

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