Adrian Tanner

Adrian TannerEducation:

BA, British Columbia, 1964
MA, British Columbia, 1966
PhD, Toronto, 1976


Honorary Research Professor


Phone: (709) 864-8868
Office: QC4003

Research Interests:

Symbolic and social anthropology, North American aboriginal peoples; religion, ritual and symbolism, colonialism, aboriginal rights, non-Western land tenure and political development, subsistence economics and indigenous knowledge; Canada, Oceania.

Selected Publications:


  • (with John C. Kennedy, Gordon Inglis and Susan McCorquodale) ‘Aboriginal Peoples and Governance in Newfoundland and Labrador’. In: Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, For Seven Generations: An Information Legacy of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples. Ottawa, Libraxus Inc, 1997[1995]. [CD-ROM]
  • Bringing Home Animals. Religious Ideology and Mode of Production of the Mistassini Cree Hunters London, Hurst Publishers; St. John’s, Institute of Social and Economic Research; New York, St. Martin’s Press, 1979.
  • Trappers, Hunters and Fishermen; Wildlife Utilization in the Yukon. Ottawa, Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Northern Co-ordination and Research Centre, 1966.


  • ‘The Representation Of Local Indigenous Knowledge.’ In: Karen Hardy (ed.) Archaeological Invisibility and Forgotten Knowledge. Conference Proceedings, 5 - 8 Sept 2007, University of Lodz, Poland. Oxford, Archaeopress, BAR International Series 2183, 2010.

  • Brent Kuefler, Adrian Tanner, and David C. Natcher ‘Capacity-Building Moose Cree Style: Moose Cree Strategies for Becoming a Goose Hunter’ In Planning Co-existence: Aboriginal Issues in Forest and Land Use Planning. Marc G. Stevenson and David C. Natcher (editors) Edmonton: Canadian Circumpolar Institute Press, 2010.
  • with Berkes, Fikret, Iain Davidson-Hunt, Nathan Deutsch, Catie Burlando, Andrew Miller, Charlie Peters, Paddy Peters, Richard Preston, Jim Robson, Matthew Strang, Lillian Trapper, Ronald Trosper, and John Turner. ‘Institutions for Algonquian Land Use: Change, Continuity, and Implications for Forest Management’. In Changing the Culture of Forestry in Canada: Engaging Canada’s Aboriginal Peoples in Sustainable Forest Management. M.G. Stevenson and D. Natcher, eds. Pp. 35-52. Edmonton: Canadian Circumpolar Institute Press, 2009.

  • ‘From Fur to Fir: In Consideration of a Cree Family Territory System of Environmental Stewardship’. In Changing the Culture of Forestry in Canada: Engaging Canada’s Aboriginal Peoples in Sustainable Forest Management. M.G. Stevenson and D. Natcher, eds. Pp. 53-62. Edmonton: Canadian Circumpolar Institute Press, 2009.
  • 'Aboriginal Social Suffering and the Quebec Cree Healing Movement' in Kirmayer, L.J., & Valaskakis, G. (eds.) Healing Traditions: The Mental Health of Canadian Aboriginal Peoples, Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2008.
  • ‘The Nature of Quebec Cree Animist Practices and Beliefs’. In Frédéric B. Laugrand and Jarich G. Oosten La nature des esprits dans les cosmologies autochtones / Nature of Spirits in Aboriginal Cosmologies. Québec, Les Presses de la Université Laval, 2007.

  • ‘On Understanding Too Quickly. Colonial and Post-Colonial Misrepresentation of Indigenous Fijian Land Tenure.’ Human Organization, 2007,66(1).
  • ‘Innu Indians’; ‘Mi’kmaq Indians’; ‘Mohegan Indians’. The World Book Encyclopedia, pages 276, 540, 688. Chicago, World Book Publishing, 2005.
  • ‘The Cosmology of Nature: Cultural Divergence and the Metaphysics of Community Healing’ in John Clammer, Eric Schwimmer and Sylvie Poirier (eds.) Figured Worlds. Ontological Obstacles to Intercultural Relations. Toronto, University of Toronto Press, 2004.
  • ‘The Double Bind of Aboriginal Self Government’ in Scott, Colin (ed.) Aboriginal Autonomy And Development In Northern Quebec and Labrador. Vancouver, UBC Press, Chapter 21, pp. 396-414, 2001.
  • (Third author with Laurence Kirmayer, Lucy Boothroyd, Naomi Adelson and Elizabeth Robinson) ‘Psychological Distress Among the Cree of James Bay’ Transcultural Psychiatry, 37(1):35-56, 2000.

  • ‘The Innu of Labrador’ In Freeman, Milton (ed.) Endangered Peoples of the Arctic. Struggles to Survive and Thrive. Westport, Greenwood, 2000. Pp 75-92.

  • ‘The Impact in Newfoundland and Labrador’ in Owen Lippert (ed.) Beyond the Nass Valley. National Implications of the Supreme Court’s Delgamuukw Decision. Vancouver, The Fraser Institute, 2000. Pp. 377-386.
  • ‘Culture, Social Change and Cree Opposition to the James Bay Hydro-Electric Development' in Hornig, James (ed.) Social and Environmental Impacts of the James Bay Hydroelectric Project. Montreal, McGill-Queen’s University Press, 1999.
  • ‘The Aboriginal Peoples of Newfoundland and Labrador and Confederation’ Newfoundland Studies, 14(2):238-52, 1998.

  • ‘Research on Mental Health Issues in Aboriginal Communities: How Can it be Useful?’ in Oblin, Caroline, Laurence Kirmayer, Kathryn Gill and Elizabeth Robinson (eds.) Widening the Circle: Collaborative Research for Mental Health Promotion in Native Communities, Proceedings of a conference organized by the Culture and Mental Health Research Unit. Montreal, McGill University, 1998.
  • ‘Loin des yeux, loin du coeur. Terre-Neuve et l’administration des Innus du Labrador’ Recherches Amerindiennes au Quebec 27(1):19-31, 1997.
  • ‘Colo Navosa; Local History and the Social Construction of Region in interior Vitilevu, Fiji.’ Oceania 66(3):230-251, 1996.

  • ‘Algonquian Land Tenure and State Structures in the North’ in Corrigan, S. W. and Joe Sawchuck (eds.) The Recognition of Aboriginal Rights. Brandon, Bearpaw Publishing, 1996. [Reprint of the 1983 journal article with the same title.]
  • ‘History and Culture in the Generation of Ethnic Nationalism’ Michael Levin (ed.) Aboriginality and Ethnicity. Toronto, University of Toronto Press, 1993.
  • (with Sakej Henderson) ‘Aboriginal Land Claims in the Atlantic Provinces’ in Ken Coates (ed.) Aboriginal Land Claims in Canada. Toronto, Copp Clark Pittman, 1992.

  • (with Paul Charest) ‘Présentation. La reconquête du pouvoir par les autochtones’ Anthropologie et Sociétés 16(3):5-16, 1992.

  • ‘Occupation du territoire: la définition du mot occupation, en tenant compte du pouvoire spirituel d’appropriation.’ in Hydro-Québec, Vice-présidence Environnement, Project d’aménagement des rivières Nottaway, Broadback et Rupert, La Variabilité de la notion de territoire. Actes d’un symposium sur la notion du territore, Rapport final préliminaire Anexe 1, 1992.

  • ‘Le Pouvoir et les peuples du quart monde’ Anthropologie et Sociétés 16(3):17-36, 1992.
  • ‘Northern Political Solidarities: Groupings, Representations, Interests and Ideologies.’ in O. Bausk (ed.) Ways of Political Development of Indigenous Peoples of the North. Novosibirsk, Russia: Institute of Philosophy and Law, USSR Academy of Sciences, 1991.

  • 'Spatial Organization in Social Formation and Symbolic Action: Fijian and Canadian Examples.’ in Gron, O, E. Engelstad and I. Lindblom (eds.) Social Space. Human Spatial Behaviour in Dwellings and Settlements. Odense, Denmark; Odense University Press, 1991.
  • ‘Northern Indigenous Cultures in the Face of Development’ in Saunders, J. Owen, The Legal Challenge of Sustainable Development. Calgary, Canadian Institute of Resources Law, 1990.
  • ‘The Significance of Hunting Territories Today.’ In Cox, B. (ed.) Native People, Native Lands. Ottawa, Carleton University Press, 1987. [This is a substantial revision of the 1973 paper with the same title (see below).]
  • 'The New Hunting Territory Debate: An Introduction to some Unresolved Issues.’ in ‘Who Owns the Beaver? Northern Algonquian Land Tenure Reconsidered’, Anthropologica n.s. 28(1-2):19-36, 1986.
  • ‘Montagnais-Naskapi.’ The Canadian Encyclopaedia. Edmonton, Hurtig, 1985. [There is also a revised version of this article published by McLellan and Stewart in the second edition].
  • ‘Notes on the Ceremonial Hide of the Quebec-Labrador Innuts.’ In Cowan, W. (ed.) Papers of the Fifteenth Algonquian Conference. Ottawa, Carleton University, 1984.
  • ‘The End of Fur Trade History.’ Queen’s Quarterly 90(1):176-91, 1983.
  • ‘Introduction. Canadian Indians and the Politics of Dependency.’ In Tanner, A. (ed.) The Politics of Indian­ness. Case Studies in Native Ethnopolitics in Canada. St. John’s, Institute of Social and Economic Research, 1983. pp. 1-36.

  • ‘Algonquian Land Tenure and State Structures in the North.’ The Canadian Journal of Native Studies 3(2):311-320, 1983.
  • ‘La Politique du Quartrieme Monde et les Autochtones de Canada.’ Anthropologies et Societes 4(3):45-58, 1980.
  • ‘Game Shortage and the Inland Fur Trade in Northern Quebec, 1915 to 1940.’ In Cowan, W. (ed.) Papers of the Ninth Algonquian Conference. Ottawa, Carleton, 1978.

  • ‘Divinations and Decisions: Multiple Explanations for Algonquian Scapulamancy’. Yearbook of Symbolic Anthropol­ogy 1978. Montreal, McGill-Queen’s, 1978. pp. 89-101.
  • ‘The Hidden Feast. Eating and Ideology among the Mistassini Cree. In Cowan, W. (ed.) Papers of the Sixth Algonquian Conference. Ottawa, National Museums of Canada, Mercury Series, 1975. pp. 291-313.
  • ‘The Significance of Hunting Territories Today.’ In Cox, B. (ed.) Cultural Ecology: Readings on the Canadian Indians and Eskimos. Toronto, McLellan and Stewart, 1973. pp. 101-114.
  • ‘Existent-ils des Territoires de Chasse?’ Recherches Amerin­diennes au Quebec 1 (4-5): 69-83, 1971.
  • ‘Occupation and Life Style in Two Minority Communities.’ In Chance, N.A. (ed.) Conflict in Culture: Problems of Develop­mental Change among the Cree. Ottawa, Canadian Research Centre, 1968.