Transatlantic Exchanges: Histories, Cultures, and Languages Beyond National Borders
Histories, Cultures, and Languages Beyond National Borders
Sep 13, 2022
This conference seeks to establish relations and educational exchanges between entities who share common French, Creole, transatlantic cultures, languages, and identities in North America for the purposes of re-historicizing the educational landscape of marginalized Franco/Afro/ Indigenous/Creole activist communities. French colonialism in North America (1600-1800) impacted a vast swath of territory from Canada, the Mississippi Valley to current day Louisiana as well as the Caribbean. The complex, creole culture which emerged from this settler colonial occupation has been overshadowed in U.S. and Canadian historical and contemporary accounts by the singular narrative of Anglo-Protestant hegemony. By complicating the story of settler colonialism this conference hopes to expand our understanding of educational history, the role of French languages/cultures and the agency of those impacted by colonialism in their quest to be acknowledged as full human beings/citizens. Ultimately these international transatlantic exchanges will afford us curricular and pedagogical opportunities to interrogate and reimagine our responsibilities as educators in relation to past, present, and the future.
3:30 - 4:00 PM
Opening Prayer by: Jenny Tenasco from the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation, located two hours north of Ottawa.
Welcome by the Deans:
- Richard Barwell, Dean for the Faculty of Education at uOttawa
- Roland Mitchell, Dean for the College of Human Sciences & Education at LSU
4:00 - 5:30 PM
Educational Histories, Minority Contexts, and Languages
Petra Hendry, Professor Emerita, College of Education at Louisiana State University
Summary: Creole Pedagogies in the French Transatlantic
This presentation seeks to articulate a transatlantic cosmopolitan creole revolutionary educational tradition that emerged in the hybrid, fluid flows of an ever-present transatlantic circuit. A transatlantic worldview of history re-situates colonial New France and early antebellum “Louisiana” as part of a “pedagogical circuit” that encompassed African, Indigenous, Caribbean, European, South and North American intellectual exchanges. This reconceptualization not only challenges the dominant geographic constructs of the nation state, but disrupts the “Enlightenment” and its corollary ideas of freedom, democracy and revolution, by maintaining that this vibrant, hybrid crossroads was the locus for a creolized democratic, revolutionary culture of equality. Born of the spirit of African and Indigenous cosmologies, Catholic universalism and the democratic ideals of the American, Haitian and French revolutions the educated subject took on a multiplicity of meanings including that of the transnational, global citizen.
Phyllis Dalley, Professor and researcher at the University of Ottawa, Phyllis Dalley, Ph.D. is a pedagogue and sociolinguist involved in fundamental and didactic research in education.
Summary: Identity Affirmation and Blindness
France established itself in North America beginning in 1603. Deported from Acadia in 1755, conquered on the Plains of Abrahams in 1960, its colonizing project was forgotten in Canada, erased from the memory of the struggle for the survival of a language, a culture, an identity. In this struggle, which is still current, the French-language school in a minority context was imagined as a place of production and reproduction of unitary Francophone individual and social identities. Today, the history of Indigenous residential schools and the stories of a growing Francophone population of African descent are creating cracks, challenging the minority discourse that serves as the foundation of the struggle. This paper will explore this gap and the possibilities it creates for the construction of a new story for the future of the Canadian Francophonie.
Awad Ibrahim, Air Canada Professor in Anti-racism at the Faculty of Education, University of Ottawa. He is a Curriculum Theorist with special interest in anti-racism and social justice, youth culture, Hip-Hop, diasporic and continental African identities, and applied linguistics.
Summary: Thinking History, Minority Context and Language through Édouard Glissant’s Creolization and Métissage
Édouard Glissant argues that the world is creolizing, and creolization is thus the fate of the planet. Distinguished from métissage, when the world creolizes, this means “les cultures du monde mises en contact de manière foudroyante et absolument consciente aujourd’hui les unes avec les autres se changent en s’échangeant à travers des heurts irrémissibles, des guerres sans pitié mais aussi des avancées de conscience et d’espoir qui permettent de dire – sans qu’on soit utopiste, ou plutôt, en acceptant de l’être – que les humanités d’aujourd’hui abandonnent difficilement quelque chose à quoi elles s’obstinent depuis longtemps, à savoir que l’identité d’un être n’est valable et reconnaissable que si elle est exclusive de l’identité de tous les autres êtres possibles.” My aim in this presentation is to think (educational) history, minority context and language through the work of Édouard Glissant. Here, whose history, minority context and language will serve as the central question of my discussion.
5:15 - 5:45 PM
5:45 - 7:15 PM
Cultural Agency and Continuity in the French Transatlantic
Joyce Jackson, Chair and Professor of the LSU Department of Geography and Anthropology
Summary: Diasporic & Creolized Performance Identities and Activism in the Black Masking Indian Culture
I am examining individual and collective identity constructs and exploring ways in which they are visually imagined, conceptualized, expressed, and performed in a ritual theater in the streets of New Orleans. In this creolized (Indigenous, African, Caribbean, French) folk ritual of the Black Masking Indians, the visual domain functions as an arena through which shifting notions of identity may be articulated. The central focus is how art and design practices, music and linguistics are produced in relation to temporal, geographic, socio-economic and political resistance contexts.
Christian Coocoo, originally from the Atikamekw community of Wemotaci, Quebec. Trained in anthropology at Laval University in Quebec City, he is the Coordinator of Cultural Services at the Atikamekw Nation Council since 1998. He works actively for the valorization and the perpetuation of the culture of his nation. He initiates and coordinates the documentation, transfer and outreach activities on the history, knowledge and traditional ways of the Atikamekw. He has also been collaborating for several years on various research projects with organizations and researchers from several universities.
Summary: Kiskinohamasowin Atisokana Program
The presentation will focus on the creation of the Atikamekw social universe curriculum at the primary and secondary level: the Kiskinohamasowin Atisokana program. The objective of these courses is to offer young Atikamekw Nehirowisiwok an opportunity to better understand the realities of their nation and those of other people. The first year of the Atisokana program is currently taught to Secondary 1 students in Atikamekw secondary schools in the communities of Wemotaci and Manawan. This presentation will concentrate more specifically on the challenges that were encountered during the preparation of the program and the pedagogical choices that resulted.
Monique Verdin, is an interdisciplinary storyteller, citizen of the Houma Nation and director of The Land Memory Bank & Seed Exchange, responding to the complex interconnectedness of environment, economics, culture, climate, and change in the Gulf South. Monique is currently working to support the Okla Hina Ikhish Holo, a network of Indigenous southeastern gardeners, to grow food and medicine sovereignty in the lower Mississippi River Delta and is a member of the Another Gulf Is Possible Collaborative. Monique is co-producer/subject of the documentary My Louisiana Love and co-author of Return to Yakni Chitto : Houma Migrations.
Summary: Land Loss: Land Back: Land Memory
The Houma Nation and all coastal Indigenous Peoples living along the bayous at the ends of the Mississippi River Delta are facing rising seas, sinking soils, and uncertain futures; but land loss did not begin with climate change. Land loss is rooted in colonial foundations built upon decisions made on behalf of the best interests of corporations. Land Loss: Land Back: Land Memory will explore invisibilized histories of Mississippi River Delta migrations, recognizing forced assimilations, and the need for regenerative relationships to be honored to support just adaptations for present and future generations.
7:15 - 7:30 PM
Moderators: Nicholas Ng-A-Fook, Patrick Philips, and Melissa Daoust, Molly Quinn, Petra Hendry, Rachanda Smith
Translations: Nathalie Rech