Extracting Northern Knowledge: Tracing the History of Post-Secondary Education in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut


  • Kelly Black Carleton University


This article traces the historical development of post-secondary education
in the Western and Eastern Arctic from the end of the Second World War to the
late 1980s and explores the role that southern Canadian universities have played
in carrying out the socio-economic goals of nation building in the North. Writing
from an interdisciplinary perspective, I argue that the history of higher education
in the North should be situated within the context of settler colonialism, Canadian
nationalism, resource extraction, and the struggle for Indigenous self-determination.
The debate around a “bricks and mortar” northern university is ongoing, and this
article brings attention to the questions and concerns of the past in order to inform
present and future dialogue around post-secondary education in the North.

Author Biography

Kelly Black, Carleton University

PhD Candidate, School of Canadian Studies and the
Institute of Political Economy




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