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Sharing circle: Our learnings from organizing an anti-colonial intercultural dialogue program – University Affairs

by ahnationtalk on June 5, 202423 Views

JUN 05 2024

International students are both invited and uninvited to Canada. Universities and colleges invite international students as temporary visitors; while from a decolonial perspective, international students are also uninvited visitors on Indigenous lands like any other settler. Despite their temporary status in Canada, international students have a role to play in reconciliation, which includes learning about ongoing colonial violence against Indigenous peoples (ex. see 100 Ways: Indigenizing & Decolonizing Academic Programs by Shauneen Pete). This knowledge not only provides  better understanding of the genocide, ecocide and epistemicide that took place on this land, but could also help them  realize their entanglement with settler colonialism.

Like many other Canadian universities, Memorial University is prioritizing internationalization and Indigenization as an institutional strategic priority. Since many scholars have expressed their concern about how a campus internationalization strategy can be viewed as a colonial project,  practitioners in the field have started to think about how to untangle colonialism from internationalization efforts.

In this column, we highlight an initiative that we took to engage international and Indigenous students in dialogue on colonization, Indigeneity, cultural diversity and reconciliation. We will share the lessons we have learned.

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