Our friend Greg Macdougall at Equitable Education filmed the complete discussion of our December 10, 2013 Returning to Ourselves event.
From left to right is Wab Kinew, Celina Cada-Metasawagon, Geraldine King, Leanne Simpson, Chief Isadore Day, Lee Maracle, Chief Derek Nepinak, and Ryan McMahon.
We partnered with Anishinaabe comedian Ryan McMahon to distribute the evening’s discussion as part of his Red Man Laughing podcast. The audio can be streamed or downloaded here:
Gchi miigwech to host Ryan McMahon and all the speakers who contributed their voices to the Niigaan Winter Gala Fundraiser!
Link to the Red Man Laughing site: http://rmlpodcast.com/listen/niigaan
Niigaan: In Conversation is honoured and excited to partner with Red Man Laughing for its upcoming Winter Gala and Fundraiser at the National Arts Centre on December 10, 2013 in Ottawa, Ontario. The theme is Biiskaabiiyang (returning to ourselves) particularly regarding how to move forward in the collective work across the land. Please join us for music, laughter, discussion, dancing and delicious food. The Red Man Laughing Podcast will be a discussion to recreate our shared future. It’s been a year since Chief Spence’s fast and Idle No More. It’s time to regroup, refocus and figure out what we’re doing next. We do this by looking at what we’ve done and what needs to be done and where to go next.
We asked ourselves, what happened to the fire? The community rallied around Chief Spence, there was a desperate feeling, people brought wood, food, soup, medicines, water. We need to get that energy back. The problems are still here, we still have work to do.
We want to hear everyone’s contribution to this discussion;
Please join us to add your voice to this important project.
Our host for the evening is Ryan McMahon, comedian, actor, thinker and Anishinaabe living in Winnipeg. He will be joined by:
- Grand Chief Derek Nepinak (Pine Creek First Nation, Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs)
- Chief Isadore Day (Serpent River FN)
- Lee Maracle (author of a number of critically acclaimed, award-winning works)
- Leanne Simpson (author of a number of critically acclaimed, award-winning works)
- Geraldine King (academic extraordinaire and community mover and shaker)
- Celina Matasawagon (astounding inspiration)
- Gerri Trimble (Jazz singer beyond compare)
- Mosha Folger (a.k.a. M.O. hip hop, spoken word master)
- Christi Belcourt
- Sonny Assu
- Jaime Koebel
- Mo McGreavy
- Shady Hafez
- Kelly-Ann Kruger
Wab Kinew, Director of Indigenous Inclusion at the University of Winnipeg, the host of CBC’s 8th Fire and Al Jazeera host, will be joining us to film the discussion between our host and our guests! In partnership with the University of Winnipeg, Niigaan: In Conversation discussion will be used to create teaching materials around the topic of Idle No More. We are so honoured and excited that the University will be supporting our work.
An exciting theatre workshop based on the Blanket Exercise we use in our Treaty Workshops. Register early!
Niigaan: In Conversation
March 9, 2013
National Arts Centre
Speakers: Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair, Elder Albert Dumont, Theland Kicknosway, Elaine Kicknosway, Tiffany Dumont, Thomas King, Leanne Simpson and Victoria Freeman, Bonita Lawrence and Chief Gilbert Whiteduck, Claudette Commanda and John Read LL.B., Craig Benjamin (Amnesty International) and Andrea Landry
Niigaan: An Evening of Conversation
June 8, 2013
University of Ottawa
Speakers: Waubgeshig Rice, Elder Verna McGregor, Lawrence Martin, John Borrows, Ed Bianchi (KAIROS), Chelsea Vowel, Shiri Pasternak
Honour the Apology
July 25, 2013
Speakers: Claudette Commanda, Barb Hill, Linda Koosis, Lysandra Chaplin, Geraldine King
Niigaan Treaty Workshops
July 15, 31 and August 15, 2013
Speakers: Ed Bianchi, Richard Powless, Niigaanwewidam Sinclair, Rarihokwats
Niigaan: Talk Show
September 15, 2013
University of Ottawa
Participants: Native Women’s Association of Canada, Amnesty International, KAIROS, Ecology Ottawa, Asinabka Indigenous Film and Media Arts Festival, OPIRG, Families of Sisters in Spirit, Native Youth Sexual Health Network. Speakers: Ian Campeau, Qajaq Robinson, J-L Fournier, Ed Bianchi, Alexa Lesperance, Jennifer Adese
October 22, 2013
Muslim Community Centre
October 29, 2013
Participants: Richard Powless, Albert Dumont
November 2, 2013
No One Is Illegal, Re-Launch & Conference, “Building the Treaty Relationship with Settlers”
From September 15, 2013. Seven guests discussing Indigenous-settler relations, Indigenous naming, the Nepean Redskins name, and what decolonization means. Speakers: Jennifer Adese, Alexa Lesperance, Neal Freeland, Ed Bianchi, Jean-Luc Fournier, Ian Campeau, Qajaq Robinson. Host: Darren Sutherland. Video produced by EquitableEducation.ca
Most of the first Niigaan: In Conversation that was held on March 9, 2013 is now archived on our Youtube channel.
Introductions, featuring event co-organizer Linda Nothing, host Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair, Elder Albert Dumont, song from Elaine and Theland Kicknosway, and dancing by Tiffany Dumont.
Opening presentation from Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, with introduction by Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair.
Presentation from Victoria Freeman, with additional commentary and response to audience questions from Leanne Betasamosake Simpson and Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair.
Presentation from Claudette Commanda.
Presentation from John Read, with additional commentary and response to audience questions from Claudette Commanda and Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair.
Presentation from Andrea Landry.
Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair introducing Craig Benjamin of Amnesty International, in final panel discussing future actions, ally responsibilities, and implementation of United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Audience responses follow.
A conversation about the land
On October 17, 2013, after months of vocal opposition, the Mi’kmaq defenders of the land in Elsipogtog we attacked by RCMP officers and their dogs. What led to that confrontation and what does it mean for all of us living together because of a treaty relationship?
Please join us for learning and discussion on Tuesday, October 29 and 6pm at Gallery 101, 301 Bank Street (upstairs).
We will touch on three related areas:
Spirit: We feel such a connection to land that we will cry when we are told news of environmental devastation and distruction. We cry because we feel the pain of creation whose health has been compromized. Elsipogtog teaches us that our bodies should defend the land so that our grandchildren have something left to connect to.
Legal History: The Mi’kmaq signed a peace and friendship treaty in 1761 so that the English could settle but not to trample Mi’kmaq interests; the land was never relinquished. Before they came for shale gas, they came for the timber, the fish, and the wildlife. However, look forward to modern times the Canadian Supreme Court’s judgment in 1999 recognized Mi’kmaq rights under that treaty. What does that mean for resource extraction?
Fracking: What is it? Why do we use the technology? What are the social and environmental impacts? What is being done and how can we inform ourselves and voice our opinion?
For more information please watch this space or facebook.com/niigaanfuture
Baamaa pii ga waabmin!
(see you soon!)
September 15, 1-5pm
University of Ottawa Alumni Hall
85 University Private
Host: Darren Sutherland
Guests: Alexa Lesperance, Jennifer Adese, Ed Bianchi, Neal Freeland, and others…
Participation by: Kairos, Ecology Ottawa, Native Women’s Association of Canada, Amnesty International, Odawa Friendship Center, Families of Sisters in Spirit, and others…
To reserve your tickets please click here.
On September 15, 2013, Niigaan: In Conversation is proud and excited to present a chance to participate in a discussion about recreating the relationship between Indigenous and Settler peoples here in the city. Meet local community organizers and visionaries, share ideas, and add your energy and passion to making Ottawa a truly indigenized and inclusive city.
Decolonization is art that changes everything we know or thought we knew about our community, our country and our world. It is the inclusion of Indigenous stories in our collective histories. It is the unlearning and relearning Canadian history. It makes us uncomfortable, and that’s okay because it means we are learning.
Decolonization challenges the foundational structure and story of Canada and the accepted narratives of who we are and recognizes the many narratives that exist and deserve equal airtime in our consciousness.
The art of decolonization leads to material changes. What we hope starts as conversation will build into relationships that build into ideas that build into action that build into houses and healthcare and child care and equal services and lands and the respect for the treaties that have built this nation. So that no more 11 year olds decide to take their own lives and parents can keep their children safely at home and students can achieve their dreams because their schools are just as good as anywhere else and communities can build sovereign healthy nations rooted in their culture.