The University of British Columbia

UBC Connects SVG
presented by Santa J. Ono

Michelle Good

Education through dialogue: the human cost of colonialism

Thursday, December 2, 2021
2:00pm – 3:30pm

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This series is supported by alumni UBC

Resilience

About the Speaker:

Michelle Good is a Cree writer and a member of the Red Pheasant Cree Nation in Saskatchewan. After working for Indigenous organizations for twenty-five years, she obtained a law degree and advocated for residential school survivors for over fourteen years. Good earned a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at the University of British Columbia while still practising law and managing her own law firm.

Her poems, short stories, and essays have been published in magazines and anthologies across Canada, and her poetry was included on two lists of the best Canadian poetry in 2016 and 2017. Five Little Indians, her first novel, won the HarperCollins/UBC Best New Fiction Prize, the Amazon First Novel Award, the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Rakuten Kobo Emerging Writer Award. It was also longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and a finalist for the Writer’s Trust Award. Michelle Good now lives and writes in the southern interior of British Columbia.

About the talk:

For millennia, Indigenous people sustained thriving, living cultures and societies on the back of the Turtle. We wove our histories into intricate and beautiful stories to keep our truths alive, generation upon generation upon generation. Then those ships sailed and, armed with a colonial toolkit filled with the necessary implements to commence a course of systemic impoverishment among Indigenous peoples. With clear intention they sought dispossession through law and policy, the creation of dependency and ultimately near total oppression of what had been self-determining forever. One of those implements was the strategy to dismember Indigenous families, and thus communities and nations, by taking the children. There is the colonizer’s account of that. We see it in the history books. And then there is ours. Creating and holding space for Indigenous people to correct history; to impart the truth is a necessary pre-requisite to reconciliation. Let us, together, light a dialogue fire and keep the flame burning until the truth overturns the colonial lie.  



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