Indigenous Scholars Speaker Series

The Office of the Vice-Provost Indigenous Engagement is hosting a speaker series featuring Indigenous scholars at the University of Manitoba. These talks will highlight the research and expertise of Indigenous scholars, while providing new opportunities for students, staff and faculty to learn about Indigenous perspectives and knowledges.

During the fall term, the talks will take place every second Thursday starting September 20, 2018. All talks will take place in Room 200, Education Building from 11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

September 20, 2018
Dr. Barry Lavallee
Senior Physician, Ongomiizwin-Education
Rady Faculty of Health Sciences

To Be a Race or Not To Be a Race: the Paradox at the Academy
Indigenous peoples success within the academic institution exceeds the deficit narrative of the dead and dying Indian by far. This narrative remains persistent within the academy in many ways. While it is honorable and purposeful to celebrate Indigeneity at the institution, the realization of this settler obligation necessitates disruption and dismantling of practices and procedures that continue to advance whiteness. Elimination of Indigenous-specific racism within the institution is one of those obligations. While racialization of Indigenous peoples is acceptable in practice, the racialization of whites and other non-Indigenous persons is not. This paradox carries deliberate and detrimental consequences to Indigenous communities. The institution must not shy away from including racism and racialization across the domains of research, administration, and education.

October 4, 2018
Dr. Laara Fitznor
Associate Professor, Educational Administration, Foundations & Psychology
Faculty of Education

Indigenous Education and Understanding our 'Positionalities' for Bridging 'our Worlds' for Reconciliatory Efforts
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) calls for Reconciliation in the deepest and most engaging way possible. It is possible: Those of us in the field of education must respond through engaging deep philisophical approaches and deep self-knowledge about our social positioning in society. Knowing ourselves from different angles is an important part of understanding Indigenous education that calls for our reconciliatory efforts for engaging co-existence. The idea of positionality as an important part of getting to know ourselves within our multiple contexts of our social identities such as race, class, cultural survivance, genders, etc., all of which are shaped by historic processes that includes our habits, practices and discourses. Our willingness to examine Ourselves place visions and dreams into our hands for bridging realities and enacting reconciliation efforts.

October 18, 2018
Dr. Marlene Atleo
Senior Scholar, Educational Administration, Foundations & Psychology
Faculty of Education

Our Stories are True, They Are Life Affirming Narratives: Storywork as Indigenous Survivance Scripts

Nuuchahnulth grandparents, the naniiqsu, spoke in storied discourse when we lived with them. Cultural narrative was the logic with which they talked about living. Their terms of reference were their lives and doings as storywork. The bits and pieces of Nuuchahnulth stories about here or there in the territory were continuously part of their meaning making with us when I was a young parent. Of course, we needed to know the time of day, how to do laundry and fish and berries and the other instrumental knowings in the bicultural demands of reserve life. But... the narrative frame in which we lived was and continues to be storied with survivance stories. In the presentation, I will share a storywork framework based in research with Elders and how the worked stories, "as far as I know".

November 1, 2018
Dr. Emma LaRocque
Professor, Department of Native Studies
Faculty of Arts

Decolonizing the University Classroom: Looking Back and Looking Forward
Dr. LaRocque will trace her experiences, observations and analyses of teaching within a very 'western' climate to current times and trends of "Indigenization."

November 15, 2018
No talk - fall reading break

November 29, 2018
Dr. Warren Cariou
Professor, Department of English, Theatre, Film & Media
Director, Centre for Creative Writing and Oral Culture
Faculty of Arts

The Now Place: Indigenous Storytelling in the Contemporary World
While many of today's celebrated Indigenous artists and writers draw inspiration from their nations' traditional stories, far less attention has been given to the contemporary Indigenous storytellers who continue to share and perform these stories. In this talk, Warren Cariou will introduce listeners to the extraordinary work of three storytellers: Omushkego Cree Elder Louis Bird, Okanagan Syilx Elder Basil Johnston, and Kainai Elder Flora Zaharia. Though these Elders' stories provide crucial connections to Indigenous teachings that date back many generations, they are not in any way archaic. In fact, Cariou argues, they need to be understood as contemporary performances, revealing and expressing Indigenous cultural vitality in our present age. By focusing on representations of time and territory in these stories, Cariou will attempt to show how these storytellers perform an ethics of relationship that connects listeners and also teaches them about our responsibilities to one another and to our environment.

December 13, 2018
Dr. Fred Shore
Assistant Professor, Department of Native Studies
Faculty of Arts

So, Why Are the Metis So Hard to Identify?
Historically, the Metis have been called everything from Half-Breeds to Mixed Bloods. Today, there is the problem of people in Eastern Canada who call themselves Metis but who are more than likely First Nations. The Canadian inability to let go of the colonial underpinning of our nation continues to contribute to the problem of Metis identity. A possible imminent settlement of the Metis land claim makes the need for a solution a priority but we are far from an acceptable solution for all concerned.

For more information please contact:
Ruth Shead
Coordinator, Indigneous Achievement







Indigenous Scholars Speaker Series Poster 
Click on above image for printable PDF poster.