JHI Working Group - Native Performance Culture and the Rhythm of (Re)Conciliation: Remembering Ourselves in Deep Time
This performative intervention is the first of a series of site-specific truth-activations on the St. George campus of the University of Toronto.
Each intervention re-presences a seemingly neutral plot of "Terra Nullius" upon which an institutional edifice has been erected, marking it as a place where destructive power was exerted—a force that continues to reverberate through Indigenous blood, bone and memory today.
To mark the sun's autumnal passage across the equator, members of Native Performance Culture and the Rhythm of (Re) Conciliation: Remembering Ourselves in Deep Time with Sto:Loh author, educator and Knowledge Keeper Lee Maracle and the Digital Dramaturgy Lab [squared] activate a restory-ation of University of Toronto's School of Graduate Studies (SGS).
The SGS house is the house that Sir John A. Macdonald occupied in the year he revised and signed the 1876 Indian Act into legislation. In 1879, one year after leaving this house, Macdonald commissioned Nicolas Flood Davin to research and publish the report that would constitute the foundation of Canada's residential school system.
This live streamed intervention is a project, which draws awareness to this history while speaking back to the tangled saga of research adventures that storied into being the exclusion of Indigenous peoples and knowledge systems from this campus, environmental missteps, and eugenics policies and praxis—all of which are inextricably woven into the DNA of this important institution.
Text: Jill Carter