STATEMENT ON THE SCHOLAR STRIKE CANADA

 

 

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The UBC Department of Anthropology will be participating in this week’s Scholar Strike Canada on September 9 and 10. Students in UBC Anthropology courses should check with their instructors regarding plans for classes on those dates. We encourage students to participate in the Programme of Digital Teach-Ins organized by Scholar Strike Canada, featuring talks by Desmond Cole, Erica Violet Lee, Eve Tuck, and Rinaldo Walcott, among others. You can find the full program here.

From the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ -speaking Musqueam people, our Department stands in solidarity with protesters in the United States, Canada and across the globe who are risking their lives in the face of state violence and a pandemic to fight institutionalized anti-Black oppression and demand justice. We condemn the murders of Black and Brown Americans, Canadians and countless others around the world whose lives have been lost to police and state violence in a long history of systemic injustice, extending back to the first occupations of these territories by non-Indigenous outsiders. We likewise condemn the autocratic displays of militarized force that have erupted across North America, as well as the structurally embedded racism that is particularly exposed by our current crises of COVID-19 and police brutality. Here in Canada, we must all do more to address the longstanding issues of institutional and social racism embedded in the systems which shape our lives and work.

As noted by the Association of Black Anthropologists, ‘white supremacist violence is at the heart of the founding of the United States.’ In Canada, we share this legacy. As anthropologists, we acknowledge that our discipline emerged from, benefited from, and has continued to perpetuate these very same systems of oppression. We are committed to research that dismantles persistent structures of colonialism and white supremacy, within our discipline and in the world beyond it.  As part of this work, we support and reinforce the demands of Indigenous, Black, Asian, migrant, and other racialized communities on the front lines of explicit and implicit violence. We pledge to create and uphold anti-racist cultures of equity with space to breathe for all.

As a Department, we are developing an action plan to implement the 43 recommendations contained in the University’s recently finalized Indigenous Strategic Plan and will share our plans and progress on our homepage.

 

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