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The book, “We Were Not the Savages” reflects on the perspective of the history of Mi’kmaq which neared demise following the invasion of North America by the Europeans. This analytical treatise attempts to explicitly review the elements of interdiction in the history of Mi’kmaq colonization following the European invasion of their community.
Mi’kmaq and European civilization
In analyzing the interdiction of the Mi’kmaq by the European civilization, Paul (2000) brings about the question of the legitimacy of the different ideologies in the then free society. Paul asserts that the issue legitimacy ensures of stability of the the society. Therefore, civilization power can only be fully exercised by the deities and beliefs endorsed in the light of principles and ideals acceptable to common human reason.
This framework should tolerate as well as respects others of different opinions. Hence, this provides a particular explanation for the resistance of the European civilization by the Mi’kmaq. These fundamental ideas from the Mi’kmaq culture were then interpreted into the social conception of the ideal sages that differentiated the dualist existence of hell and heaven. It was freestanding since its content was set out independently of the comprehensive doctrines that members of the Northern America culture affirmed.
Unlike the hypothetical imperatives of the European invaders, Paul (2000) argued that categorical imperatives motivated the community to undertake actions by the desires to complete such actions. These actions were ideal and expected of mankind, irrespective of experience since they were universal.
Sociological Imagination is the intrinsic ability to surpass common view and analyze situation as they occur in the background of informed theoretical conceptualization. Paul (2000) views the Mi’kmaq society as a platform where conflicting and friendly occurrences interact to influence behavioral inclination, norm organization, and conflicts as a result of cut link between order and anarchy.
As a matter of fact, this concept liberates an individual to draw an informed understanding of the past through reflection of current events. Through sociological imagination, it is easy to understand behavior change and identify forces: positive or negative, that facilitate the angle of inclination towards the preset norm and values at individual and societal magnitude.
As a matter of fact, understanding sociological imagination calls for knowledge of present and past events such as war, disaster, social injustices, and religious inclinations that helped to change history of the North America society.
History of Mi’kmaq
Specifically, the Mi’kmaq subculture is unique in interactive modes, language, phrases, and dressing style. Besides, most of these interactive traits are acquired in a systematic and continuous process characterized by a sense of belonging, unity for a common goal, and belief in religious ideology.
By refusing to accept the European culture and declaring them unfriendly, North America societies had to live with the question of legitimacy in the then free society. This led to an overlapping consensus in which each ‘reasonable’ Mi’kmaq refused to affirm the European religious law within own perspective (Paul 2000).
There are specific deities and sages that define what is ideal and the contrary in the Mi’kmaq community. These beliefs create a standard and uniform ground from which all members are in a position to accomplish morality in more or less the same approach. In fact, morality will is dependent on intention and imperatives that function at every level of society.
Conclusively, a subculture defines physical and spiritual interactive traits of its members who are united by a sense of belonging and desire for identity. The subcultures of the invaders and the Mi’kmaq are unique in practices surrounding language, dressing style, religious affiliation, and philosophical beliefs. Though very friendly to the invaders, the Mi’kmaq community were subjected to inhuman treatment and slavery in their own land.
Paul, N.D. (2000). We were not the savages: a Mi’kmaq perspective on the collision between European and Native American civilizations. New York, NY: Fernwood.