James Bay - Development for Whom?

Publisher:  Development Education Centre, Toronto, Canada
Year Published:  1974
Pages:  103   Price:  $10.00 (rental)   Resource Type:  Slide Show
Cx Number:  CX240

Documentary of the struggles of the Native Peoples affected by the James Bay project.

This montage is a case study which questions the assumptions of development priorities now dominant in Canadian society, the interests which produce them and the forces are beginning to pose challenges to them.

The programme deals with development issues involved in the construction of the huge hydro-electric project in Northwestern Quebec. Although this montage was produced in 1974, it still has value for Canadians particularly in view of the obvious parallels between the James Bay project and the proposed Mackenzie Valley pipeline project.

The programme locates the struggles of the native people affected by the project in the context of the power relations which structure our society as a whole. It explains how the land and the rights of the Inuit and Cree people are exploited in order to permit the global search for energy and resources by trans-national corporations to continue. The montage also shows how the Quebec government makes job creation for white workers dependent on the dislocation of the native people from their land. There is a discussion of how the provincial government and the trans-national corporations and the banks have structured political and economic benefits into the project for themselves. The cost to Quebec's working people of interest payments on loans, concessions to trans-nationals, and displacement of people, far outweighs the revenue made by selling hydro-electric energy to New York industries.

The programme also indicates how some native groups and Quebec workers resisted the project.

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