CFP – Indigenous Expressions of Culture in Storytelling, Drama, Theatre and Performance – Traditional and Contemporary Canadian and Polish Upper Silesian Perspectives. Due: Dec 31, 2016

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A Conference Organized by the University of Silesia,  Poland  and the University of the Fraser Valley, Canada

April 26-28, 2017, University of Silesia, Sosnowiec campus

Second Call for Proposals

Indigenous Expressions of Culture in Storytelling, Drama, Theatre and Performance –Traditional and Contemporary Canadian and  Polish Upper Silesian Perspectives.

Confirmed Speaker: Tomson Highway (Cree)

“Storytelling is at the  core of decolonizing,  because it is a process of remembering, visioning and creating a just reality […] [it] becomes a lens through which we can envision our way out of cognitive imperialism” (Simpson 89)

The first of the intended series of conferences dedicated to the exploration of the complexity of Indigenous cultures of North America and minor cultures of Eastern/Central Europe – is a joint project of the Department of English and Indigenous Affairs Office, University of the Fraser Valley (UFV), Canada,  and the  Canadian Studies Centre, Department of American and Canadian Studies, Theatrum Research Group and the Centre for the Study of Minor Cultures at the University of Silesia (US),  Poland. As Canadian and Polish scholars and educators working in the fields of  Indigenous, minor, and transcultural literary and cultural studies, we propose that the first conference will explore the traditional and contemporary expressions of culture in Indigenous America,  specifically Canada, and in the Eastern/Central European territory of Upper Silesia, specifically Poland, with a primary focus on the  acts of resistance, survival and celebration of culture as enacted in storytelling, drama, theatre and performance (DTP). Performance is interpreted broadly including traditional and contemporary music and dance as well as festival events understood as modes of cultural storytelling. We envision the event as a meeting of Indigenous and non-Indigenous scholars representing a variety of disciplines  and Indigenous Canadian and Upper Silesian storytellers, writers,  artists, performers,  educators and community members.

Our aim is to explore the richness of Indigenous expressions of culture in storytelling and DPT in Canada and Upper Silesia. We believe that the transcultural dialogue between scholars, artists and educators of marginalized cultures will be an enriching learning experience for all,  but especially for Upper Silesians, colonized by diverse powers throughout history, whose most recent struggle for recognition,  including the processes of cultural and linguistic revitalization, can benefit from such transcultural encounters.

The exploration of Canadian scholarship on Indigenous literatures and cultures, and especially the work of Indigenous playwrights, artists, performers, scholars/critics and educators is of great interest to the critics of minor/ Indigenous literatures and cultures in Europe. We believe that in spite of many differences between Indigenous cultures of America and minor cultures of Eastern/Central Europe, critical insights and analytical tools offered by Indigenous research methodologies, epistemologies and pedagogical theories  can provide instructive,  alternative ways of approaching the under-studied and under-theorized works of European minor/Indigenous writers, performers and artists. A panel discussion by specialists in this area will explore diverse perspectives on these complex issues.

Prospective participants are invited to submit proposals for traditional and non-traditional presentations that broadly address the theme of the conference. Submissions from graduate and postgraduate students at any stage of their research are welcome. The following list of topics should be regarded as neither exhaustive nor prescriptive:

  • Re-reading and re-writing of history in DTP
  • Poetics, aesthetics and politics of identity construction in DTP
  • Storytelling, drama, theatre and performance as tools of decolonization and pedagogy
  • Storytelling as a repository and archive of Indigenous knowledge
  • Interrogating the concept of indigeneity: theorizing indigenous and minor cultures perspectives
  • Indigeneity of Upper Silesia
  • Transindigeneity and a dialogue of cultures
  • Indigenous ontology, epistemology, axiology, and methodology and their translation into storytelling and DTP
  • Use of oral traditions, stories,  culture and history to promote activism
  • Inventing home through stories and performance: a decolonizing approach to DTP
  • Performing history and re-visioning of community memories DTP
  • The role of the storytelling and DTP in the cultural revival of Canadian Indigenous cultures
  • The role of the storytelling and DTP in the cultural revival of Upper Silesian culture and language
  • (De)Construction of cultural identity in storytelling and DTP
  • Traditional knowledge and values in storytelling and DTP
  • Indigenous/ local knowledge and traditional and contemporary expressions of culture
  • Performance of identity and  language recovery and revitalization
  • Language recovery and revitalization and identity construction
  • Methodological practices of Native Performance Culture (NPC) as a possible model for the Upper Silesian expressions of culture
  • Diversity of the traditional Indigenous forms of cultural expression in the contemporary Canadian Indigenous and Upper Silesian DTP
  • Theories of affect and the enactment of Indigenous cultures in storytelling and DTP
  • Traditional knowledge versus folklore and its performance
  • Folklore and theatre
  • The role of folklore in preserving Indigenous and minor cultures
  • The condition of ritual in theatre – Canadian Indigenous and Slavic perspectives
  • Contemporary storytelling methods in DTP
  • The poetics of place and aesthetic values
  • Poetic auto-creation and mythologizing of Indigenous cultures and landscapes
  • Indigenous values and cosmologies and their translation into DTP
  • Heritage tourism and storytelling
  • Cultural festivals and their role in preserving and inventing cultures

With a comparative project in mind, we are initiating new avenues of research related to the marginalized local/ indigenous/minor cultures of Eastern/Central Europe studied in the context of Indigenous cultures of North America. We hope this pioneering venture in will lead to a greater understanding of the Indigenous and minor cultures functioning within major dominant national narratives of Canada and Poland.


University of Silesia:                                         University of the Fraser Valley                                      

Eugenia Sojka

Aneta Głowacka                                            Michelle LaFlamme

Sabina Sweta Sen                                             Shirley Swelchalot Shxwha:yathel Hardman

Rafał Madeja


Deadline for abstracts:  December 31st 2016 ;

Notification of acceptance:  January 6th 2017


Please send proposals to: indigenoustheatre2017poland@gmail.com


Proposal submission address: 

(i) Individual proposals should be 250-300 words.

(ii) For panels, in English, or Polish, please send the title of the panel and a 250-word presentation explaining the overall focus together with a 250-300 word abstract for each participant.

(iii) Please attach a short bio to your conference paper proposal.

All files should be clearly marked with the applicants’ name. Please make sure the files are in the PDF format.


Registration fee: covering welcome reception, all conference materials, coffee breaks, and conference banquet.

  • $ 250 US – full time faculty
  • $125 US – students and part-time faculty

Publication: selected papers based on the conference presentations will be published in a refereed  monograph.

The conference website will be opened shortly.





Assistant or Associate Professor in Indigenous Literatures, Department of English. Due: Mar 31, 2016

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Assistant or Associate Professor in Indigenous Literatures, Department of English, Faculty of Arts
Job ID: 9966

Updated: February 23, 2016

Location: Main Campus

Position Description

The Faculty of Arts, Department of English, invites applications at the rank of Assistant Professor (tenure-track) or Associate Professor (with tenure) in the area of Indigenous Literatures.  The anticipated start date is July 1, 2016.

We are seeking candidates who will establish and maintain an active research program with the ability to secure external research funding; produce high impact research and scholarship in their area of specialization; teach graduate and undergraduate courses, and supervise graduate and undergraduate students; and engage in meaningful service activities within the department, faculty, university and community.

As a faculty member in the Department of English, the successful applicant will have a PhD in English or Indigenous-related literary studies and a demonstrated ability to conduct research and develop partnerships with local communities. Candidates will have interdisciplinary strength in Indigenous Studies and the ability to direct the Faculty of Arts’ International Indigenous Studies program (http://www.ucalgary.ca/indg/).

Applicants at the Assistant Professor level are expected to provide evidence of, or potential for, excellence in both research and teaching through peer-reviewed publications in leading journals and academic presses, and have a track record of successful grant applications, course development and teaching effectiveness, as well as community-engaged scholarship with Indigenous peoples.

Applicants at the Associate Professor rank must demonstrate excellence in research, teaching and community engagement through publications in leading journals and academic presses, proven success in obtaining competitive research funding, evidence of teaching effectiveness and instructional development, as well as successfully concluded projects with Indigenous peoples. The successful candidate will be able to assume a leadership role at the beginning of the appointment.

The Department of English is a research-intensive department with high standards in teaching. It values interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to research and training, and strongly encourages collaboration. The department has thriving MA and PhD programs, and recognized strengths in historical literary periods, archival and book history, postcolonial literature, creative writing, new media and digital humanities, among other areas. For more information about the Department of English, please visit https://english.ucalgary.ca/. With 56 undergraduate programs and over 7,100 students, the Faculty of Arts is the largest and most diverse faculty at the University of Calgary. For information on the Faculty of Arts, please visit https://arts.ucalgary.ca/about. For information on programs and departments in the Faculty of Arts, please visit https://arts.ucalgary.ca/programs.

In their letter to the committee, applicants should address current and future research directions including community engagement. They should also send a current curriculum vitae, one refereed publication, and evidence of teaching excellence such as a statement of teaching philosophy, recent teaching evaluations, examples of course development; and should arrange to have three confidential letters of reference forwarded directly to:

Dr. Jacqueline Jenkins
Head of English
Faculty of Arts
University of Calgary
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, Alberta T2N 1N4

or by email to Barb Howe, at howe@ucalgary.ca

All applications must be received by March 31, 2016.

The University of Calgary believes that a respectful workplace, equal opportunity and building a diverse workforce contribute to the richness of the environment for teaching, learning and research, and provide faculty, staff, students and the public with a university that reflects the society it serves. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. In this connection, at the time of your application, please answer the following question: Are you a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada? (Yes/No)

Additional Information

To view a listing of all available academic opportunities and to find out more about what the University of Calgary has to offer, please visit our Academic Careers website.

About the University of Calgary

The University of Calgary is Canada’s leading next-generation university – a living, growing and youthful institution that embraces change and opportunity with a can-do attitude. Located in the nation’s most enterprising city, the university is making tremendous progress on its Eyes High journey to become one of Canada’s top five research universities, grounded in innovative learning and teaching and fully integrated with the community it both serves and leads. Ranked as the top young university in Canada and North America, the University of Calgary inspires and supports discovery, creativity and innovation across all disciplines. For more information, visit ucalgary.ca.

About Calgary, Alberta

Ranked the 5th most livable city in the world, Calgary is one of the world’s cleanest cities and one of the best cities in Canada to raise a family. Calgary is a city of leaders – in business, community, philanthropy and volunteerism. Calgarians benefit from a growing number of world-class dining and cultural events and enjoy more days of sunshine per year than any other major Canadian city. Calgary is less than an hour’s drive from the majestic Rocky Mountains and boasts the most extensive urban pathway and bikeway network in North America.


Apply Online: http://careers.ucalgary.ca/jobs/5055528-assistant-or-associate-professor-in-indigenous-literatures-department-of-english-faculty-of-arts

“Celia’s Song”, Presentation by Lee Maracle – 12-1pm, Mar 24, 2016

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Celia’s Song

Lee Maracle
Sto:Loh Storyteller, Grandmother, Author and Traditional Cultural Director, University of Toronto

Thursday, March 24, 12-1pm
Liu Institute, Multipurpose Room
6476 NW Marine Drive, UBC
Directions: http://bit.ly/LJDOI3

Lunch provided with RSVP online:

SYNOPSIS: Mink is a witness, a shape shifter, compelled to follow the story that has ensnared Celia and her village, on the West coast of Vancouver Island in Nuu’Chahlnuth territory.
Celia is a seer who — despite being convinced she’s a little “off” — must heal her village with the assistance of her sister, her mother and father, and her nephews.
Celia’s Song relates one Nuu’Chahlnuth family’s harrowing experiences over several generations, after the brutality, interference, and neglect resulting from contact with Europeans.

Lee Maracle is a member of the Sto:Lo nation. She was born in Vancouver and grew up on the North Shore. She is the author of the critically acclaimed novels Ravensong and Daughters Are Forever. Her novel for young adults, Will’s Garden was well-received and is taught in schools. She has also published on book of poetry, Bent Box, and a work of creative non-fiction, I Am Woman. She is the co-editor of a number of anthologies, including the award winning anthology My Home As I Remember and Telling It: Women and Language across Culture. Her work has been published in anthologies and scholarly journals worldwide. The mother of four and grandmother of seven, Maracle is currently an instructor at the University of Toronto, the Traditional Teacher for First Nation’s House, and instructor with the Centre for Indigenous Theatre and the S.A.G.E. (Support for Aboriginal Graduate Education). She is also a writing instructor at the Banff Centre for the Arts.
This event is co-sponsored by Indigenous Pedagogies, as part of the Social Justice Institute’s Thematic Research Networks.

Call for Submissions: Gatherings-Water project. Deadline EXTENDED TO MARCH 15, 2016

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Theytus Books is please to announce the Gatherings-Water project and a call for writing submissions from B.C. based Indigenous Youth on the theme of water. The Gatherings-Water anthology will be published in November 2015 and those writings chosen by an editorial committee will be featured in the book as well as receiving an honorarium and complementary copy.

This special book marks the return of the Gatherings anthologies that were a mainstay of Theytus Books’ publishing program for a decade. In addition to the anthology, there will be community engagement writing workshops in four B.C. Indigenous communities (locations and dates to be announced) blogs on the Gatherings-Water website and news and links to issues vital to the importance and future of Water in the B.C. region.

The Gatherings-Water project reflects the cultural rejuvenation of Indigenous Youth in B.C. It is not only a revival of a respected anthology series, but also a new level of engagement between publishing house and community, between established writers and emerging voices, and finally a testament to the connection of Indigenous Youth with the life-sustaining power of water.

This call for submissions is open to Indigenous Youth in the province of B.C., 30 years of age and younger.

Submissions can be prose, poetry, nonfiction or based on legends or teachings. Submissions should not exceed 3,000 words.Email your submission as a .jpg, .pdf, or .docx with a short biography of yourself to publisher@theytus.com. Please include 2-3 lines about your submitted work and what water means to you.

Submissions deadline EXTENDED TO MARCH 15, 2016

For more Information:

Publisher: Dr. Gregory Younging 250-493-7181 Ext. 2249 publisher@theytus.com

Theytus Books Ltd. gratefully acknowledges the support of the First Peoples’ Cultural Foundation in making ‘Gatherings ~ Water’ possible.

SSHRC Storytellers Contest/« J’ai une histoire à raconter » du CRSH

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Le français suit.

Dear Colleague :


On November 19, SSHRC will launch its fourth annual Storytellers challenge.Over the years the contest has been a tremendous success, thanks in large part to the engagement of institutions in promoting it.


As always, we welcome your collaboration. At the following link, you will find various promotional materials: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/j64kq9zd7zp3sme/AAD-DKE3APNN8LAM9QSvpLTva?dl=0


I encourage you to share this information with your colleagues in research offices, graduate offices and faculties, and to promote the contest to your students to give them their best chance at success. Together, we will be enhancing excellence in research communications while promoting the very best research in social sciences and humanities across the country.


The contest is open to all students, graduate and undergraduate, enrolled at Canadian postsecondary institutions. Their task is to tell the story, in 3 minutes or 300 words, of a SSHRC-funded research project—their own or a professor’s. Each year, we select 25 finalists to receive a $3000 cash prize and specialized training in research communications.


For further details on this year’s Storytellers challenge, please follow us on Twitter, watch the #SSHRCStorytellershashtag, and visit the SSHRC website.


Don’t hesitate to be in touch should you have any questions. Please note that participant questions should be addressed to Storytellers@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca.


Thank you for your collaboration.


Yours sincerely,

David Holton

Great research matters. How your students tell its story is just as important.



Le 19 novembre, le CRSH lancera son quatrième concours national annuel J’ai une histoire à raconter.Le concours connaît un énorme succès au fil des années grâce, en grande partie, à l’engagement des établissements à le promouvoir.

Comme toujours, votre collaboration est la bienvenue. Vous trouverez des outils promotionnels variés en cliquant sur cet hyperlien : https://www.dropbox.com/sh/j64kq9zd7zp3sme/AAD-DKE3APNN8LAM9QSvpLTva?dl=0

Je vous encourage à partager cette information avec vos collègues dans les bureaux de recherche, les bureaux des études supérieures et les facultés, afin de promouvoir le concours auprès de vos étudiants et leur donner les meilleures chances de succès. Ensemble, nous travaillerons à accroître l’excellence en communication de la recherche tout en faisant la promotion des meilleurs travaux de recherche en sciences humaines partout au pays.

Le concours est ouvert aux étudiants de tous les cycles, inscrits dans un établissement postsecondaire canadien. Leur mandat est de raconter l’histoire, en trois minutes ou en 300 mots, d’un projet de recherche, financé par le CRSH. Le projet peut être le leur ou celui de leur professeur. Chaque année, nous sélectionnons vingt-cinq (25) finalistes qui reçoivent un prix en argent de 3 000 $ et participent à un atelier spécialisé en communication axée sur la recherche.

Pour obtenir plus d’information au sujet du concours J’ai une histoire à raconter de cette année, veuillez nous suivre sur Twitter, prêter attention au mot-clic #RécitCRSH et visiter le site Web du CRSH.

N’hésitez pas non plus à communiquer avec moi si vous avez des questions. Les questions des participants devraient quant à elles être envoyées à récit@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca.

Merci de votre collaboration.

Je vous prie d’agréer, collègues universitaires, mes salutations les plus sincères.

David Holton

La recherche, ça compte! La façon dont les étudiants de votre établissement en parlent aussi!

Award-winning storyteller and performer Sharon Shorty named VPL’s 2015 aboriginal storyteller in residence

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Award-winning storyteller and performer Sharon Shorty named VPL’s 2015 aboriginal storyteller in residence

August 12, 2015

Photo: Mark Rutledge

VANCOUVER, B.C. – Vancouver Public Library is pleased to announce Sharon Shorty – speaker of the Teslin Tlingit Council and an award-winning playwright and actor – as its 2015 aboriginal storyteller in residence.

A member of the Tlingit (Raven Clan), Northern Tutchone and Norwegian People, Shorty has deep roots in the storytelling tradition of the southern Yukon. For more than 25 years, she has fused this tradition with her acclaimed performance on stages around the world.

Shorty’s creative approach is a blend of contemporary genres and traditional storytelling passed down from her grandmothers. She has been recognized with the Aurora Award for storytelling and for her play Trickster in the Old Folks Home, and she received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for significant public service to the Yukon and Canada.

“I am fortunate to have the mentorship of my grandmothers and be part of an unbroken series of oral traditions,” says Shorty. “Having lived in the Yukon and Vancouver for a number of years, I have strong ties to the Lower Mainland and am looking forward to being VPL’s aboriginal storyteller in residence.

“This will be a great opportunity to share the traditions of my people and focus on the use of stories in everyday life,” she continues. “Whether it’s sharing family history, finding stories rooted in identity, or inspiring younger generations to engage with their story, I aim to grow that connection.”

VPL’s award-winning aboriginal storyteller program was created in 2008 and was one of the first at a Canadian public library.

“We are delighted to be able to bring Sharon’s passion for storytelling to Vancouverites,” says VPL chief librarian Sandra Singh. “Our aboriginal storyteller program is just one of the ways libraries showcase the power of stories – to cross cultures, to bridge generations and connect us with ideas and with each other.

“Libraries provide access to a world of information across formats and through diverse channels,” she says. “Coming together to experience stories – such as Sharon’s – provide opportunities that are just as important to learning as reading books or watching films.”


Shorty’s inaugural event as VPL’s 2015 aboriginal storyteller in residence is Tuesday, Aug. 25 (7 p.m.) at the central library’s Alice MacKay room.

This public event will feature a special welcome to the territory and traditional stories from the North. Admission is free.

Additional events at VPL branches across the city will run throughout the fall season. Look for details at VPL branches or at vpl.ca/events.

High-resolution images and media interviews are available upon request.


About Vancouver Public Library

Vancouver Public Library has been dedicated to meeting the lifelong learning, reading and information needs of Vancouver residents for more than 100 years. Our vision is an informed, engaged, and connected city. Our mission is a free place for everyone to discover, create and share ideas and information. Last year, VPL had more than 6.8 million visits with patrons borrowing more than 9 million items, including books, ebooks, CDs, DVDs and magazines. Across 21 locations and online, VPL is the most-visited major urban library per capita in Canada.

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.

CFP – Decolonizing the Digital: First Peoples’ On-Line Presence, Due Feb. 15, 2015

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Decolonizing the Digital: First Peoples’ On-Line Presence

From the use of social media during the Idle No More movement to the growth of on-line magazines and educational platforms, Canada’s First Peoples are increasingly using the internet as a space of resistance, community development, and as a platform for sharing and preserving language and tradition. The essay collection Decolonizing the Digital: First Peoples’ On-Line Presence will merge Digital Humanities with Indigenous Studies in order to explore how First Peoples are mobilizing various on-line formats in the service of cultural protection and dissemination.

  •  Possible essay topics could include:
  •  Language apps
  • Social media and protest/resistance
  • Interactive website, such as Pearson Education’s The Ruptured Sky: The War of 1812
  • Online graphic novels
  • The role of podcasts
  • Bias in digital archiving
  • Storytelling/orature websites, such as the Skins Workshops on Aboriginal Storytelling and Video Game Development
  • The role of Youtube in cultural sharing
  • The use of digital resources in the classroom

Please forward your essay or essay proposal to Jesse Archibald-Barber, Associate Professor, First Nations University of Canada (jbarber@fnuniv.ca) and to Jessica Langston, Adjunct Professor, Concordia University (jessica.langston@concordia.ca).

Essay proposals 500-1000 words; Essays 2000-8000 words

Deadline for proposals: Feb. 15, 2015

Deadline for essays: May 15, 2015

Red Man Laughing’s Ryan McMahon: Laughter as Medicine, Dec 9, 2014

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Red Man Laughing’s Ryan McMahon: Laughter as Medicine
Ryan McMahon is one of the most dynamic Indigenous comedians working in Canada and the United States. His comedy is an honest look at the collision between Indian Country and mainstream society. Ryan’s storytelling brand of comedy is as smart as it is angry – full of characters, standup, rants and raves. He is a role model for how humour can take you places and get you through life. This event is hosted by UBC Learning Circle. 
Tuesday, December 9, 3:30 – 4:30 PM
Participate via videoconference or computer webinar
For more information, visit here.
To register, visit here.

Source: The Talking Stick: News and Information from the First Nations Longhouse, December 1, 2014.