Interpreting Sui Generis Treaties


  • James (Sakej) Youngblood Henderson



This article explores the interpretive principle of sui generis treaties introduced by the Supreme Court of Canada since the repatriation of the Constitution in 1982. The article proceeds through an analysis of treaty rights as constitutional rights, contextual analysis of Indian Treaties, the intent of the treaty parties and the principles which govern the interpretation of treaty text. The author concludes that the principles articulated by the Supreme Court of Canada are an attempt to affirm and enhance Aboriginal worldviews and cognitive diversity within the Constitution of Canada.