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Difference between Aboriginal and First Nation

Difference between Aboriginal and First Nation

When most people think of Aboriginal people in Canada, they think of First Nations. But there is a big difference between the two terms. While they may seem interchangeable, Aboriginal refers to all Indigenous peoples in Canada, while First Nation is just one group among many. Let’s take a closer look at the differences between Aboriginals and First Nation.

Who is Aboriginal?

Aboriginal peoples are the original inhabitants of the land now known as Canada. The term “Aboriginal” refers to First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. These three groups are distinct, with their own unique histories, languages, cultural practices, and spiritual beliefs. Aboriginal peoples have a special relationship with the land and its resources. This is based on their traditional knowledge and connection to the land, which has been passed down from generation to generation.

Aboriginal peoples have an inherent right to self-determination, which includes the right to choose their own political status and form of government. In recent years, there has been an increase in Aboriginal people reclaiming their Aboriginal identity. This has led to a better understanding of who Aboriginal people are and what they contribute to Canadian society.

Who is First Nation?

First Nation is a term that is used to describe the indigenous peoples of North America. In Canada, First Nation people are legally recognized as First Nations, Inuit, and Métis. First Nations peoples have a unique relationship with the land and have their own distinct cultures, languages, and traditions. First Nations peoples have a long history in Canada, and First Nation communities continue to play an important role in Canadian society today. First Nations peoples are proud of their heritage and are committed to preserving their culture and traditions for future generations.

Difference between Aboriginal and First Nation

Aboriginal and First Nation are terms that are often used interchangeably, but there is actually a difference between the two. Aboriginal refers to all indigenous peoples of Canada, including First Nations, Inuit, and Métis. First Nation, on the other hand, specifically refers to those Aboriginal peoples who are part of the Indian Act in Canada. In other words, First Nation is a legal term that refers to a specific group of Aboriginal peoples. However, both Aboriginal and First Nation can be used to describe the cultures, traditions, and histories of Indigenous peoples in Canada.


Aboriginal and First Nation are both terms used to describe Indigenous peoples in Canada, but they have different meanings. The term “Aboriginal” is more general, encompassing all Indigenous groups in Canada, while “First Nations” specifically refers to the original inhabitants of present-day Canada. There are 634 First Nations communities across the country, each with its own unique culture and history. If you’re interested in working with or marketing to Indigenous communities, it’s important to understand the distinction between Aboriginal and First Nation people.

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