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Identify and discuss the various ways that individuals might adopt leadership roles within their communities. Are there examples of women holding leadership roles?

Identify and discuss the various ways that individuals might adopt leadership roles within their communities. Are there examples of women holding leadership roles?

In the different ecozones of what is now Canada, the First Peoples had various ways that individuals might adopt leadership roles within their communities. In the Subarctic Cultures, different individuals would take on leadership roles as there were no formal chiefs. Both men and women contributed in making group-decisions. In the Northwest Coast Cultures, the villages had hierarchical system that ranked its people. The rank of the individual depended on how closely related they were to the leader of their group, where the social status was high if closely related to the chief. The wealth of an individual or family was based on possession of valuable resources such as copper or fish oil. In the Plateau Cultures, there were many chiefs with each having responsibility over a certain part of the village. The decision-making would be shared among each of the chiefs represented in the village. Also, elders were sought out to receive advice for the village. In the Plains Cultures, they had chiefs but it was not for ruling. The chief would be more of an advisor than a ruler of the village. In order for the chief to make decisions, an approval of the elders were required. For the Eastern Woodlands Cultures, they had village chiefs. In this culture, there was something called the Six Nations Confederacy where six First Nations group were in alliance in a democratic governing body, where they worked together. Equal participation of both women and men were involved. 

In the Eastern Woodlands Cultures, when a man marries a woman, the man would join the wife’s family and move into her family’s longhouse. Also, the inheritance follows the female line and not the male.