Source: (2003) In John Torpey, ed., Politics and the past: on repairing historical injustices. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. Pp. 217-247.

In British Columbia as elsewhere, note Ratner, Carroll, and Woolford, the political, economic, and social conditions in which most aboriginal peoples live are depressing and dehumanizing. The situation facing First Nations peoples is the culmination of political-economic processes reaching back to the nineteenth century. Specifically, it is the result of a lengthy process of colonization by Europeans in Canada. In response, a federal government White Paper in 1969 recommended full-scale integration of aboriginal people into mainstream Canadian society. According to some perspectives, this led eventually to a new paradigm for an ethical relationship between the Canadian state and its aboriginal subjects. In this view, the paradigm consists of the state and First Nations being engaged in a process of mutual adaptation with each party respecting the otherxe2x80x99s autonomy. The flaw in this view, claim the authors, is an ignoring of capitalist economic practices, sanctioned by the state, that run counter to democratic communicative action. In short, believe Ratner, Carroll, and Woolford, the new relationship is basically a new form of neo-liberal colonization that subordinates aboriginality through the functioning of the capitalist economic market. The authors examine all of this through discussion of the British Columbia treaty process in the 1990s, obstacles to negotiations between First Nations peoples and the British Columbia and Canadian governments, strategies on the part of each party to adapt to the negotiation process, and issues of truth, understandability, and comprehensibility in the negotiations.