Indigeneity strand

Thursday November 16, 10.00–18.00 in the Valand Aula and in the Glasshouse.

Indigeneity: indigeneity is for many a politically enabling construct in resisting
ongoing colonialisms, expropriations, and associated epistemic violence. It is also
marked by multiple exclusions: conceptually, as irredeemably rooted in essentialism,
primordialism and primitivism; strategically, as counter-productively factionalising and
exoticising; juridically and pragmatically, as untenable within the various regimes of
globalisation. This strand considers the epistemic challenges and potentials within
indigeneity and the continuing struggles of indigenous peoples to resist erasure.

Please note changes to schedule

  • 10.00-10.30 Introductory remarks Valand Aula
    Jason Bowman & Mick Wilson
  • 10:30-11.30 in the Valand Aula, Open session
    Dr. Dylan A.T. Miner
    Opening presentation, “giiwekii // they return home to the Land: Indigenous Art as Research in an Age of Ongoing Colonialism”
  • 11.30 -12.30 in the Glasshouse, Valand
    Discussion Forum
    Dr. Dylan A.T. Miner. Moderator is Jason E. Bowman
  • 12.30-13.00 in the Glasshouse, Valand
    Introduction of Workshop. 
    The workshop is scheduled for the end of the day, and the basic methodology of the workshop will be introduced at this point.
    Mick Wilson
  • 13.00-14.00 Lunch, served in Valand
  • 14.00-16.00 in the Glasshouse, Valand
    Panel of Presentations
    1. The Limits to Solidarity
    Ram Krishna Ranjan and Srilata Sircar

    2. “Auto-ethnography as Hiraeth”
    Onyeka Igwe (and Jd Stokely in absentia)

    Followed by open discussion.
    Short introduction of the screening programme of blog and social media addressing contemporary indigenous resistance.

  • 16.00-16.30 Short break


giiwekii // they return home to the Land: Indigenous Art as Research in an Age of Ongoing Colonialism

Dylan A.T. Miner

I am interested in thinking about the intimate relationship between visuality (ways of seeing), the tripartite system of colonialism–capitalism–heteropatriarchy, and inversely Indigenous ways of being. In this keynote, I will look at Indigenous art as ways that offer non-colonial ways of being. As is common in my writing and practice, I will employ Indigenous language and thought ↔ action.

For this lecture, I am currently thinking about and through the Anishinaabemowin terms giiwekii – ‘she/he/they return home to the Land’ – and aki-gikendamowin – ‘earth knowledge’. What implications do these have for artistic education and how Indigenous artists in non-Indigenous spaces navigate these ongoing colonial education systems.

In this talk I will discuss my own artistic practices, interrogate Indigenous and Western critical theory, apply Indigenous epistemologies, and discuss recent work by Indigenous artists that respond to ongoing ecological destruction (and its relationship with colonialism). Recent art and action against the Dakota Access Pipeline and other extractive industries have brought some of this into mainstream media attention.

The limits to solidarity

Ram Krishna Ranjan and Srilata Sircar

The notion of indigeneity is closely related to the historical experience of settler-colonialism. As the definition adopted by the UN (1972, 1983) would disclose, the indigenous or aboriginal self is defined in relation to its settler-colonial other.

This poses a specific analytical conundrum for the application of the idea of indigeneity in contexts such as India, where no distinct settler-colonial other can be identified without entering a quagmire of socio-political resistance and pitfalls. Within this conceptual landscape, our paper will explore the limits to solidarity posed by indigeneity-based political mobilisations. Specifically, the paper will discuss contemporary Dalit and Adivasi mobilisations in India and the divergence between the two based on the notion of indigeneity.

Auto-ethnography as Hiraeth

Onyeka Igwe (and Jd Stokely in absentia)

Archives are the physical manifestations of our collective understanding of history, a way of proving and so legitimising the existence of cultures, practices and peoples. However, for queer people of colour, entrance into the archive is not easily permitted, the truths of these lives have been, and are presently, excluded, claimed as contingent and/or rendered ‘folk’ – lesser forms of knowledge than traditional archival institutions.

Auto-ethnography is a tool that enables those excluded to both archive and imagining ways to fill the gaps in the archive. Hiraeth is a Welsh word that has no direct English translation, in this way, we use hiraeth to describe the liminal space in which experiences of home, artistic practices and, relationship to the archive exists.

In this paper, we will discuss the ways in which QTPOC artists have employed auto-ethnography in their practices, including our own, to implode the archive. We will explore the ways in which auto-ethnography expands what the archive holds – by claiming, naming and legitimising the lives and truths of those marginalised. Further, auto-ethnography can also provide a space to render the untranslatable, the im/possible, as archive material. It is a strategy of both redefinition and defiance.

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