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Call for Participants: Decolonizing 1867: Stories from the People

Deadline for Proposals: 15 October 2016

Indigenous peoples have long been calling attention to the processes and effects of colonialism in the western hemisphere. With movements such as Idle No More, Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, and Black Lives Matter bringing discourses around colonization to the attention of settler Canadians, discussions and inquiries into what decolonization is and what it means have become increasingly visible. In a year in which the significant colonizing act of Canadian Confederation is celebrated, we invite participants to critically examine the year 1867 through the framework of decolonization.

Hosted by the L.R. Wilson Institute for Canadian History at McMaster University during the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association in May 2017, the Decolonizing 1867: Stories from the People workshop, organized by Kathryn Magee Labelle and Stacy Nation-Knapper, will highlight innovative work that examines 1867 from alternative perspectives that explore a more holistic historical approach to events in the territory that became Canada. A select number of submissions will be forwarded for consideration for an edited collection with the L.R. Wilson Rethinking Canada in the World Series (McGill-Queen’s University Press).

At this stage we invite proposals of 250 words by 15 October 2016. Invitations to present at the symposium will be issued upon acceptance by the CHA Annual Meeting organizing committee. The workshop will involve an in-depth discussion of each participant’s submission, with papers pre-circulated by 15 April. Participation in Decolonizing 1867: Stories from the People will not disqualify participants from submitting panels to the CHA Annual Meeting.

Creativity is encouraged. Submissions are not limited to traditional research papers, but may also include poster sessions, visual art, songs etc. Participants are encouraged to think broadly and critically about 1867 and the colonization process across the continent. Proposals that include gendered, transnational, environmental, race, and class analyses are encouraged.

The following questions may help guide submissions:

– What was happening in 1867 in areas that became Canada?

– Has Confederation been remembered in Indigenous communities? Why or why not?

– What are the specific legacies of 1867 for Indigenous communities?

– Was the event of Confederation discussed in Indigenous communities and if so, how?

Applicants should submit their proposals and a one-page CV to Stacy Nation-Knapper with the subject line Decolonizing 1867 to: