Deweyan Democracy and Reconciliation in Canada
Butterfield , Mary Stewart
This dissertation examines the injustices perpetrated against Indigenous people in Canada within the explicit framework of democratic theory. I examine the ability of Deweyan democracy as a purported problem-solving mechanism to deal with this problem of widespread social injustice. Deweyan democracy is distinctively epistemic, and depends upon diversity and inclusion in order to function effectively as a social and political mechanism for problem-solving. I argue that the inclusion within Deweyan democracy is insufficiently theorized to provide justice-based solutions to social problems, is overly instrumental, and can actually create injustice. Finally, I suggest that while contemporary Deweyans have applied Deweyan democracy in ways that do not provide sufficient solutions for social and political problems, there may yet be resources in Deweyan democratic theory to be explored, specifically with regard to reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people within a democratic society.