Day: March 1, 2015

Coastal First Nations Dance Festival, UBC Museum of Anthropology, March 3-8, 2015

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Come celebrate with MOA from March 3-8 as the 2015 Coastal First Nations Dance Festival fills the museum with dance traditions from across British Columbia and the Yukon. In partnership with the Dancers of Damelahamid, MOA is proud to present this annual event which features live performances and countless opportunities for visitors to engage with local First Nations artists.

Throughout the week the museum’s Great Hall will be transformed into a celebration of Indigenous cultures and dance traditions. The festival will include two signature evening performances on Friday March 6th and Saturday March 7th. The museum will also host public stage performances on Saturday March 7th & Sunday March 8th from 1-4pm. Public performances are free with museum admission.

In addition to the public and signature performances, the festival will also include artist talks, dialogues, and school programs. For a full list of events please visit our website.
Where: MOA, 6393 NW Marine Drive, Vancouver
When: March 3-8, 2015
Tickets: Evening performances are $25 for adults, $20 for students, seniors, and MOA members, tickets are available at www.ticketstonight.com

We would be thrilled if you would join us for what has become an annual tradition at MOA.

Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ont., to mandate Indigenous learning

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News Thunder Bay

Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ont., to mandate indigenous learning

All Lakehead students required to learn about indigenous peoples, starting in 2016

Feb 23, 2015 1:25 PM ET CBC News

Lakehead University is moving to make it mandatory for all undergraduate students to take indigenous education.

Starting in 2016, studies about indigenous people and issues will be incorporated into courses in every faculty on campus.

Yolanda Wanakamik, co-ordinator of graduate and external relations with the office of aboriginal initiatives, said it’s part of the university’s over all strategic plan.

“The idea is that any student in an undergraduate program will graduate from Lakehead with one half credit having significant indigenous knowledge,” Wanakamik said.

Teaching tailored to each student

The teaching will reflect a student’s area of study. For example, Wanakamik explained,” in natural resource management at Lakehead you will have a lot of foresters graduating that are going to have to engage First Nations communities, so they will need to understand what treaties are.”

Wanakamik pointed to graduating engineers as well, who need to go north and would have to learn about where they are going and the culture of First Nations.

Beyond raising understanding of indigenous people, Wanakamik said the intent of making these kind of studies mandatory is to talk openly about the issue of racism.

“There will be conversations in the classroom. Most people will be talking about stereotypes people have about indigenous people in northwestern Ontario, in fact across Canada,” she said.

Wanakamik called the move towards mandatory indigenous education unique, with Lakehead in her estimation being the only Canadian university that has done this, so far.

As a a former aboriginal student at Lakehead herself, Wanakamik said she’s proud of what the university is doing.

“People have responded to it. People are excited. This is a boost for students.”

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/m/news/canada/thunder-bay/lakehead-university-in-thunder-bay-ont-to-mandate-indigenous-learning-1.2963546

Updating Centuries-Old Folklore With Puzzles And Power-Ups

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Updating Centuries-Old Folklore With Puzzles And Power-Ups

November 30, 2014 6:50 AM ET
The story in Never Alone is based on a Native Alaskan legend about a quest to end a never-ending blizzard. i

The story in Never Alone is based on a Native Alaskan legend about a quest to end a never-ending blizzard.

E-Line Media

Never Alone, a new video game by E-Line Media, has been generating a lot of buzz in recent months. Its developers teamed up with the Cook Inlet Tribal Council, a nonprofit that works with Native Alaskans, creating Never Alone as a way to help transmit traditional tribal stories to younger indigenous kids.

Interview Highlights

AMY FREDEEN: As a tribal nonprofit, we tend to rely heavily on government funding, and that funding ebbs and flows, and so the opportunities we can offer people ebb and flow. We were looking for a way to sustain what we do. We looked at many businesses — anywhere from child care to burial services — and none of them really resonated with us. And one day we were sitting around the lunch table, and all of a sudden Gloria [O’Neill, who heads the tribal council] said, “Well, why not video games?”

SEAN VESCE: When we originally started speaking with Gloria and her team, we really tried to talk her out of doing a game because of the inherent risk — of development, cost, how competitive [the industry] is.

My career path led me to work on some kind of large-scale action games, like the Tomb Raider series based on fictional universes. I got really disillusioned with the state of the video game universe on a large scale — we tended to be pretty insular in our references, we tend to lean on gratuitous violence and other kinds of things to attract players. And as a new father I was looking for projects where I could invest my time and skill and energy into something that could have some kind of lasting impact. That was a hard search. It took maybe two years before I met Gloria. I was really struck by her vision of using games.

Read More

So far, reviews for the game have been strong. I spoke to Amy Fredeen of the Cook Inlet Tribal Council and Sean Vesce of E-Line Media about this unlikely collaboration, about representation in games, and whether video games can have a larger purpose and still be fun to play. Our conversation has been edited for clarity and length.

Job: Assistant or Associate Professor, Aboriginal Education at Lakehead University

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Assistant or Associate Professor, Aboriginal Education

The Faculty of Education invites applications for a tenure-track position in Aboriginal Education at the Assistant or Associate Professor level. A mutually acceptable starting date can be negotiated, with a preferred starting date of August 1, 2015.

Responsibilities will include teaching in undergraduate and graduate programs, supervision of graduate students in the candidate’s area(s) of expertise, and the development of a productive research program. This position includes expectations around active service to the Department of Aboriginal Education, including potentially assuming a department leadership position in the future.

The successful candidate will be an Aboriginal scholar with a completed or near completed PhD, and a record of published scholarship in Aboriginal education. University teaching experience along with teaching or research experience in a school setting is preferred. Administrative experience would be well regarded. The capacity to support Aboriginal curriculum development initiatives and/or an ability to speak an Aboriginal language will be considered assets.

The Faculty of Education has 32 full-time faculty members and offers Pre-Service Teacher Education including the HBED (Aboriginal) program, Native Teacher Education, Native Language Instruction, Continuing Education, MEd, and PhD programs.

For further information, please contact Dr. John O’Meara, Dean of the Faculty of Education, at (807) 343.8054 or jomeara@lakeheadu.ca. Detailed information on our undergraduate and graduate programs is available on our homepage on the Lakehead University website at http://education.lakeheadu.ca.

Applicants should submit electronically as PDF or Word documents: a curriculum vitae, a statement of teaching interests, course outlines and teaching evaluations from previous courses, a description of research interests, copies of two key publications, and the names of three referees to:

Ms. Karen Anderson

Administrative Assistant to the Dean, Faculty of Education


A completed Confirmation of Immigration/Citizenship Status should accompany your package. This form is available on our website at


All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority.  Lakehead University is committed to employment equity, welcomes diversity in the workplace and encourages applications from all qualified applicants, including women, individuals within visible minorities, Aboriginal persons, and persons with disabilities.

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Please see: http://hr.lakeheadu.ca/employment.php?empid=1036

This position is subject to final budgetary approval.

World Bank Admits Link to Forced Evictions in Africa

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World Bank Admits Link to Forced Evictions in Africa

February 23, 2015

The World Bank has failed to properly enforce its environmental and social guidelines regarding Indigenous Peoples in Africa. According to a leaked report obtained by  the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the Bank knew there was an “operational link’’  between its funding for an Ethiopian development initiative and the forced evictions of thousands of Indigenous Peoples.

Over the last decade, the World Bank created a health and education initiative that galvanized about $2 billion in funds. Members of the Indigenous Anuak people in Ethiopia’s Gambella region declared that the Ethiopian government was using some of the World Bank’s money in a program that supported forced evictions and allowed soldiers to beat, rape and kill Anuak people who refused to leave their homes.

Cultural Survival’s 2012 campaign successfully urged the governments of the US and UK, donor nations to Ethiopia, to recognize this link and pull funding for the projects that lead to the removal of Indigenous Peoples from their lands.  The campaign highlighted the Anuak people’s forced removal to state-created villages, and how those who refused to leave their lands were met with violent attacks, rape, and torture.

According to a leaked watchdog report, The World Bank’s internal Inspection Panel admitted that there was an “operational link” between the World Bank-funded program and Ethiopian authorities’ eviction actions. The Ethiopian government has argued that the forced removal of Indigenous Peoples and the creation of villages, known as the “villagization” program, was designed to provide access to basic socio-economic infrastructures like food, healthcare, and educational facilities to the people who are being relocated and to bring “socio-economic & cultural transformation of the people.” Under this program, the Ethiopian government forcibly relocated approximately 70,000 Indigenous People from the Gambella region to new villages that actually continue to lack basic necessities and minimum health standards. The Bank’s failure to publicly acknowledge this “operational link” and to ensure the protection of affected communities means the World Bank violated its own policies based on project appraisal, risk assessment, financial analysis and protection of Indigenous Peoples, concludes the report. …Read More.

Artist vows to restore defaced Native American murals

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Artist vows to restore defaced Native American murals

Just months before a set of larger-than-life murals honoring local Native Americans was scheduled to be memorialized on a new school’s campus, a graffiti vandal defaced the artwork in an act described by the murals’ creator as “stupid” and an “act of terrorism.”

The vandal who defaced larger-than-life murals of Native Americans in North Seattle over the weekend destroyed in one day what took the artist 12 years to create, the artist said.

“This is not an ordinary act of graffiti,” said Andrew Morrison. “It is an act of hatred and viciousness that has created heartbreak and confusion in a place where people are supposed to feel safe.”

Morrison said he learned of the vandalism to what has been called “The Great Walls of Heritage” Sunday night and drove up to see the damage for himself on Monday.

The Auburn resident, who is an art curator at Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center in Seattle’s Discovery Park, said it was the first time the murals have been defaced. …Read More.