2010 Ph.D. (History), University of Toronto.

Dissertation: .

“`Toronto Has No History!’: Indigeneity, Settler Colonialism and Historical Memory in Canada’s Largest City.” Supervisor: Cecilia Morgan.

Current Research

2021-2022: “Changing the Narrative at Black Creek Pioneer Village” 

A SSHRC funded research project on the Indigenous history and history of Indigenous-settler relations in the northwestern GTA, with Jennifer Bonnell and Alan Corbiere, York University History Dept.; Marcel Fortin, Head, Map and Data Library, University of Toronto; Ange Loft, Jumblies Theatre; Black Creek Pioneer Village; Mississaugas of the Credit; Six Nations of Grand River; Mississaugas of Scugog; and Chippewas of Rama. Research will be used to create a permanent installation and associated artistic and informational programming at Black Creek Pioneer Village.

Teaching (now retired)

York University

Canadian Studies Program, Glendon College: Course director, CDNS 4621, Decolonizing Canada/Décoloniser le Canada. (2018-2020)

Dept. of History: Course director, HIST 4508, Cultures and Colonialism: Canada 1600-1900, Summer 2019

CDNS 4622 Critical Perspectives on Canadian Issues/Perspectives critiques sur le Canada. Topic 2014/15 to 2018: Decolonizing Canada/Décoloniser le Canada. (Jan. 2014 to 2018).

Dept. of History: Course director, HIST 4520 Metis History in North America, Summer 2017.

Dept. of History: Course director, HIST 3546 History of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada (2012/13 to 2015; 2016-18)

Dept. of History: Course Director, HIST 4508, Cultures and Colonialism in Canada, 1600-1900 (2015-16)

Dept. of History, Glendon College: Supervisor, HIST 4100, Independent Study on Fur trade and proto-Metis history in Toronto (Summer 2014)

University of Toronto

Sociology Department, University of Toronto- Scarborough, Instructor, SOCC61H3F Sociology of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Course co-developed and co-taught with staff and residential school survivors support group of Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre, Fall 2017.

Aboriginal Studies Program:  Supervisor, ABS 497H1 Independent Research on Indigenous Governance, Spring 2012.

Aboriginal Studies Program: Instructor, ABS 360Y1, The Politics and Process of Reconciliation in Canada, Aboriginal Studies Program, University of Toronto. Course was co-taught and co-developed with First Nations House elder Lee Maracle, using Indigenous pedagogies, 2010/11- 2012.

Historical Studies, University of Toronto at Mississauga (UTM): Instructor, HIS369H5F Aboriginal Peoples of the Great Lakes, 1500-1815,  Summer 2006.

Academic Employment

Coordinating Director, University of Toronto Initiative on Indigenous Governance, Centre for Aboriginal Initiatives, University of Toronto, 2009 – 2012.

  • Facilitated the development of university-First Nations partnerships for community-based research and education/training that furthered Indigenous nation rebuilding and the indigenization of university curricula.

For further details on academic activities, please contact me for my academic CV . 

2 thoughts on “Academic

  1. Hi Victoria:

    Thank you for your book “Distant Relations”. It was recommended to me by D.M. Lafortune back in 2009; in fact I think she bought it from youu for me, and I simply reimbursed. I read the New England part in 2010, but delayed reading The Harris Family portion ’til 2013. I appreciate your stance that you see the history, and current situations as a settler. I’m one too.

    Like yours, my family also had a period of closer connection with indigenous people. But that was long ago, and no connections remain, except in blood a little… my mother’s and brother’s eyes.

    Since the tabling of the TRC report, I’ve been waiting to hear about initiatives by settlers to effect reconciliation between the peoples. But settlers seem to await leadership from the indigenes. Church groups and others seem talk a lot about supporting indigeous causes, like Grassy mercury. But that’s not conciliatry… not offering power sharing… autonomous power restoration… simply not sufficient.

    Trudeau speaks of nation 2 nation dialogue. But still his government and bureaucracy seek to consolidate the many nations into 2 or 3 or six, rather than many. Still the representatives of settlers utterly disrespect the right of self-determination.

    I’m looking for a settler group to work with.

    Do you know of Toronto-based groups of settlers who want the governmemnts of Canada, Ontario and municipalities to move quickly on settling all Indigenous claims, abstaining from manipulation of indigenous politics and from court delays of things like kids rights to education, nutrition and health care.


  2. I just got “Distant Relations.” Elijah Harris definitely went to Wisconsin, as did several of his children. They were in Pepin, Dunn, and Pierce counties in the northwestern portion of the state. His son Elisha, married to Chloe Wood Herrick, had a son Freeman Handcock Harris, through whom a line of Harrises descended that included my late husband’s grandmother, Amy Lillie May (Harris) Nelson.


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