|Regions with significant populations|
|Canada ( Quebec)|
|Atikamekw, French, English|
|Catholic Church, Other|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Innu, Cree, other Algonquian peoples|
The Atikamekw are the Indigenous inhabitants of the subnational country or territory they call Nitaskinan ('Our Land'), in the upper Saint-Maurice River valley of Quebec (about 300 kilometres (190 mi) north of Montreal), Canada. Their current population is around 8,000. One of the main communities is Manawan, about 160 kilometres (99 mi) northeast of Montreal. They have a tradition of agriculture as well as fishing, hunting and gathering. They have close traditional ties with the Innu people, who were their historical allies against the Inuit.
The Atikamekw language, usually considered a variety of Cree in the Algonquian family, is closely related to that of the Innu. It is still in everyday use, being among the indigenous languages least threatened with extinction. Their traditional ways of life are endangered, however, as their homeland has largely been taken over by logging companies. Their name, which literally means 'lake whitefish', is sometimes also spelt Atihkamekw, Attikamekw, Attikamek, or Atikamek. The French colonists referred to them as Têtes-de-Boules, meaning 'Ball-Heads' or 'Round-Heads'.
A small number of families make their living making traditional birch bark baskets and canoes.
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