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The Past as Present: Settler Colonialism and Justice after Genocide
March 31, 2016 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Second in the series, “What’s in a Name?” A 2016 examination of how the lost names of Indigenous sites reflect U.S. Genocide of its Native peoples.
Naming is a political act. Names have power. In naming a problem, we predetermine the kinds of solutions available to us – so we’d better be careful. We have to understand what’s in a name, particularly names like ‘genocide,’ ‘historical injustice,’ and ‘Settler colonialism.’ In each of these critical cases it’s imperative that “we know it when we see it,” or we’ll never be able to fight it where we find it.
In this presentation Sam Grey will discuss genocide as an inherent part of Settler colonialism, and Settler colonialism as an ongoing phenomenon in Minnesota – one that brings the genocide of Dakota Peoples out of the past and into the present: as acts of erasure, non-recognition, denial, assimilation, and marginalization. Naming Settler colonialism as the root problem, she asserts, opens up whole new possibilities for imagining and pursuing “justice after genocide.”
Sam Grey is a Fulbright Visiting Research Scholar at the University of Minnesota and a doctoral candidate in Political Science at the University of Victoria (BC, Canada). Her research examines the practical, political, and moral power of ‘irreconciliation’ and ‘unforgiveness’ in Mini Sota Macoce/Minnesota.