Department of History

Department of History
Department of History

Brianna Sykes

M.A. Candidate
Canadian and First Nations History, Early 19th Century





Honours Bachelor of Arts, Victoria College, University of Toronto (2014)
Specialist in History, Minor in Aboriginal Studies


My research involves an examination of the changing relations between First Nations and European settlers/the Crown in British North America, specifically Upper Canada, in the early 19th century. I plan to study how these relationships were altered after the War of 1812, from one of relative partnership to a more paternalistic approach, with the implementation of practices such as the colonial infiltration of band politics and the enforcement of Residential School attendance for Indigenous children. I will be examining the onset of the Crown’s criminalization of First Nations ways of life through a judicial-political lens, in hopes that this research will add to a better understanding of First Nations people in Canada's criminal justice system today. My research will be supervised by Professor James Carson, an established historian in North American Indigenous History and colonial encounters. 

On my spare time I enjoy reading, travelling, going to the cinema, and being with family and friends.