Louis Riel

Recently in humanities, we had a project focuses on ethical and unethical actions in Canadian history. This topic could be very vague, but there were two things my group was specifically focused on. Those two things being the story of the Red River Settlement and Louis Riel which everyone in the class focused on, and then the Second Boer War that only my group covered. In my group was Finn and I.

To start the project off, our first milestone was to find a news article that related to a current event that involved aboriginal people. We then had to fill out a response to each question word (Who, what, when, where, why and how) that tells the audience about the article. The story I decided to focus my article on was aboriginal gang warfare in Williams Lake, BC. Here is my response to the article.


Our next milestone was to choose our topics that our group would focus on, and then research them. This is where me and my partner choose to research the Boer War, since it was the first overseas military conflict that Canada participated in. There was Great divide between the French and English Canadians about the conflict and whether Canada should participate. I generally agree with the French Canadians more and think that we had no business fighting there. Here is the research we recorded.


One of the next milestones of the project was reflecting on a book that we read about Louis Riel. The book followed the experiences and actions of Louis Riel between when the sale of Rupertsland was first being negotiated, all the way to his death. It seemed to follow historical fact to a pretty high degree, but it seemed like the actions scenes were a bit exaggerated. Once everyone had read the book, we were given some in class time to write a reflection on the book. This is what I wrote, it isn’t that long, but I think it is pretty good when you account for the time restraint. I think that this represents my “Connect” competency, because it shows how I have used the actions within the book to craft my response, and the book uses people’s personal historical accounts to carry the story along.

The next milestone was the biggest part of our project. For this milestone we had to come up with and produce three images that represent the Boer War in a creative way. For this part of the project Finn was sick, so I had to create these all myself.

This was the first image I created. It is a quote for Prime Minister Wilfrid Laurier that is from an interview about the war. Behind the quote is a photo of Canadian soldiers that was taken during the Boer War. I thought that this was fitting because it showed the opinion of the Canadian government on whether Canada should participate in the war. This is one of the more neutral opinions on the war, since the government wanted to please both the English in Canada, and the French because doing otherwise would make it hard to get re-elected. Here is the image.

The second image that I created was a colored in version of a comic from an old newspaper. This comic was from a Montreal newspaper and was published in 1902. The wording of it really shows the opinion of French Canadians in relation to the war. I decided that coloring it in and drawing some small images would bring life to the image, and better explain the comic. This is my second image.

For my third and final image, I decided to make a meme. For the meme I decided to use the internet explorer meme template, which shows internet explorer tweeting something that happened a long time ago. For this image I decided to represent the English opinion of Canada participating in the war, which was that we should help Britain. It also shows quite well, who actually ordered for the troops to be sent to South Africa.

I think that these images represent my understanding of the “Understand Ethical Dimensions” competency, because they show that I have researched and looked into all of the opinions on the conflict, and used them to craft my opinion.
Another activity we did for this project was an in class debate on whether the prosecution and hanging of Louis Riel was justified. I was on the team that believed that he should have been hung. We ended up “winning” the debate according to the moderator, because we had create a list of the many crimes that Riel committed before and after he was granted amnesty. I think this is one thing that shows my understanding of the competency “Understand Ethical Dimensions”, because in order to complete the activity we had everyone debate whether a past event was justified, and then to some extent come up with a conclusion.

Overall I think that this project has been quite fun, because we got to learn a lot about the early history of Canada and the decisions of the government.

One thought on “Louis Riel

  1. I really liked the internet explorer meme, it was a good combination of history and humour.

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