Dispossessing the Wilderness: Contesting Canada’s National Park Narrative

  • Desiree ValadaresEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Cultural Heritage and Conflict book series (PSCHC)


This chapter examines the social and educational role of material culture to analyze, remember, and contextualize difficult periods in a national community’s history. Forillon National Park in Quebec serves as a lens to explore narratives of national identity formation in relation to governmental politics of recognition and reconciliation with former Francophone and Anglophone citizens whose land was expropriated to create the park. It highlights tensions in these sites of contestation as the extant vernacular architecture and cultural landscapes bearing witness to these painful events still remain undocumented. The chapter raises important questions about practices of heritage conservation and the government’s role in selecting and preserving difficult heritage to hide less palatable parts of the national park narrative that involved the systematic exclusion of people (First Nations and settlers alike) from their ancestral lands.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UC Berkeley College of Environmental DesignBerkeleyUSA

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