27 November 2019

Shannon Lecture: “As I remember it: Building digital space to share the life history and teachings of an Indigenous elder.”

The Shannon lecturer this Friday, 29 November 2019 is co-presented by Davis McKenzie, Harmony Johnson & Dr. Paige Raibmon.

Attempts to bring Indigenous knowledge and life history to the internet carry the potential for great promise and enormous pitfalls. The speakers will discuss a ground-breaking digital book that challenges common assumptions about the biographical form. As I Remember It: Teachings (Ɂəms tɑɁɑw) from the Life of a Sliammon Elder aims to share the teachings and life history of Elsie Paul, ɬaʔamɩn (Sliammon) Elder and knowledge keeper who has dedicated her life to community service. Written with the particular needs of ɬaʔamɩn community members and students from kindergarten through university in mind, this open access book is aimed at a broad audience. The product of a deeply collaborative process, the narrative structure seeks to represent ɬaʔamɩn ways of knowing and being in the world.  The authors invite ɬaʔamɩn readers to experience this digital space an extension of their traditional territory, while they invite non-ɬaʔamɩn readers to “come ashore” as guests.

Open access: http://publications.ravenspacepublishing.org/as-i-remember-it

Speaker Bios

Davis McKenzie of the Tla’amin Nation is Elsie Paul’s grandson. He holds a BA in sociology/anthropology from Simon Fraser University and an MA in communication management from McMaster University. He serves as executive director of communications and public affairs at the First Nations Health Authority. 

Harmony Johnson is of ɬaʔamɩn ancestry and is Elsie Paul’s granddaughter. She holds a BA from Simon Fraser University and a Master’s in Health Administration from University of British Columbia. She has served in a number of policy and executive roles in BC First Nations organizations and is the Vice-President, Policy, Planning and Quality at the First Nations Health Authority. 

Paige Raibmon is a mother and scholar of settler descent, and professor of history at the University of British Columbia. She lives on the unceded ancestral territory of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm people, where she was born and raised. Her previous books include Authentic Indians: Episodes of Encounter from the Late-Nineteenth-Century Northwest Coast (Duke 2004). 

Unable to attend, Elsie Paul is an Elder of the ɬaʔamɩn people and a mother-tongue speaker of the Sliammon language. She is the recipient of the Canadian Historical Association’s Lifetime Achievement award and received an honorary doctorate degree from Vancouver Island University in 2010.

The presentation is in Room 2017 in Dunton Tower starting at 1:00pm followed by a reception at 2:30pm.

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