Unsettling Conversations

You may have noted we changed the name of our discussions… we read Decolonization is not a Metaphor and out of this discussion arrived at the agreement that our name did not adequately reflect what we are working on together.  We want to recognize that Decolonization means the repatriation of lands to first peoples.  Period.  That while our discussions are important and are anti-colonial they are not decolonizing.  This is an important distinction so as to not appropriate the meaning of decolonization and to be clear that while this discussion and our organizing are steps, they are not ends.


This is where readings, videos and info. will be posted for A Freeskool’s Unsettling Conversations course.

This course currently is every other Thursday (April 4th and 18th) at 6:30 pm- 8:30 pm.


Artists we are looking at for our April 18th Discussion

Here are some visual artists whose work we wanted to look at for our discussion on the 18th.  The idea is to check out their videos, look at photos of their works online, check out an interview and do our own reading, if we wish, about the work.  The links and info. below is only to help seek out these artists… there is so much amazing information about them all!  Also, do not feel as though you need to know everything about each artist… this is your directed learning so if you prefer to go in depth on one artist do that, if you want to watch a video from each artist that’s cool too!

(All the green text, such as the artist’s name is a link.  So click ’em!)


Rebecca Belmore


Vigil and The Named and the Unamed –writing on these works


Kent Monkman

Miss Chief: Justice of the Piece

Review: Kent Monkman “My Treat Is With The Crown”


Lindsay Katsitsakatste Delaronde

I Don’t Want to Play House can be viewed right now in Camas Books!

Interview with Lindsay Delaronde (No Fun City)


Paul Yuxweluptun

An Indian Act Shooting The Indian Act, 1997 Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun


Sonny Assu


Leah Dector

Official Denial Trade Value in Progress




Discussion Reading for April 4th


Discussion Reading for March 21st

Decolonization is not a Metaphor, Eve Tuck and K. Wayne Yang, Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society

You may also wish to check out this Media Co-op article: What if Natives Stop Subsidizing Canada?

Discussion Material for March 7th

1. An Open Letter to My Settler People

2. Unsettling Minnesota Working Book

You can download the Working Book in it’s entirety here: Unsettling Minnesota Working Book.

  • Points of Unity (p 11)
  • Working Definitions (p 42)


This course is an ongoing journey into our responsibilities as settlers on stolen land.  We will both learn the history of colonization on turtle island as well as look at the present reality faced by indigenous peoples and our responsibilities to challenge and end 500 years of genocide.  The aim is to begin to strategize and support one another in our allyship with indigenous struggles and how we can make changes in our lives and communities to decolonize.  Each discussion will be centered on a reading, audio recording or video, which will be posted on A Freeskool Blog.  We will often also watch the videos in the workshop, but will indicate if prep is needed or not.

This course is facilitated by Serina Zapf.  Serina is a settler here on Lekwungen Territory and is committed to working with fellow settlers in understanding what it means for us to take responsibility for our history and ongoing colonization and to share strategies for how we can actively work together for freedom from colonization.  By no means an expert Serina will be taking care of logistics for this course, holding the space, selecting sources for discussion and facilitating conversation.  Suggestions for readings, structure, etc. are all welcome!



This is borrowed from VIPIRG’s acknowledgement in their Safer Spaces Document.

A Freeskool is located in the unceded territories of the Lekwungen peoples. The Lekwungen peoples includes the Chekonein, the Chilcowitch, the Hwyuwmilth/ Whyomilth, the Kakyaakan, the Swengwhung, the Teechamitsa, the Xwsepsum/ Kosapsum, Esquimalt and Songhees.

Neighbouring nations include the W̱SÁNEĆ peoples (BOḰEĆEN/ Pauquachin, SȾÁUTW̱/ Tsawout, W̱JOȽEȽP/ Tsartlip, and W̱SIḴEM/ Tseycum), as well as the Ditidaht, MALAXEt (Malahat), Pacheedaht, Scia’new (Beecher Bay), T’Sou-ke peoples. Nations further up island include the Hul’qumi’num and Nuu-chah-nulth peoples.

We are in Coast Salish and Straits Salish homelands. The term Coast Salish is used to encompass a number of Indigenous peoples, including Esquimalt, Hul’qumi’num, Klahoose, Lekwungen (Songhees), MALAXEt (Malahat), Musqueam, OStlq’emeylem, Pentlatch, Scia’new (Beecher Bay), Sliammon, Shishalh, Skxwú7mesh-ulh Úxwumixw, Stó:lo, Straits, Tsleil-Waututh, T’Sou-ke, W̱SÁNEĆ (BOḰEĆEN/ Pauquachin, SȾÁUTW̱/ Tsawout, W̱JOȽEȽP/ Tsartlip, and W̱SIḴEM/ Tseycum), and Xwemalhkwu.


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