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MEDIA INDIGENA : Indigenous current affairs

Current affairs roundtable focusing on Indigenous issues and events in Canada and beyond. Hosted by Rick Harp.
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MEDIA INDIGENA : Indigenous current affairs
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Now displaying: 2024
Apr 8, 2024

For our latest mini INDIGENA (the sweet + sour version of MEDIA INDIGENA), we yank on the global supply chain linking locals in Campbell River, B.C. to the opening of what’s only the second “Indigenous-operated, licensed Starbucks store” in Canada. And just like last time—when our MINI went long on what we meant to be just our opening topic—our content cup once again runneth over, as we eat up an entire episode exploring the ethics of commodity-based commerce as carried out by Indigenous participants at each end of the colossal coffee trade.

Joining fairly-caffeinated host/producer Rick Harp the afternoon of Wednesday, April 3rd were coffee companions Kim TallBear (University of Alberta professor in the Faculty of Native Studies and Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Peoples, Technoscience and Society) and Candis Callison (UBC Associate Professor in the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies and the School for Public Policy and Global Affairs).

CREDITS: 𝅘𝅥𝅯 'All Your Faustian Bargains' and 'Love Is Chemical' by Steve Combs (CC BY 4.0); 'Dust and Conclusions' by BIIANSU (via ZapSplat.com)

Apr 1, 2024

This week: building upon last episode's commanding talk by MI's own Kim TallBear, in which she highlighted the insatiable settler drive to consume all things Indigenous—including so-called ‘identity’ claims staked by individuals—host/producer Rick Harp discusses her insights with fellow roundtable regulars Ken Williams (associate professor with the University of Alberta’s department of drama) and Brock Pitawanakwat (associate professor of Indigenous Studies at York University), a conversation peppered with a rundown of just the latest litany of colonial cosplayers making headlines.

CREDITS: 'An Autumn' by BIIANSU (via Zapsplat.com); our intro/extro theme is 'nesting' by birocratic. Edited by Cassidy Villebrun-Buracas and Rick Harp.

Mar 24, 2024

On this week’s program: a plethora of pretendianism! So much, in fact, it’s going to take two whole episodes to fit it all in. And here in part one, we take our deepest dive yet into the ultimate underpinnings of pretendianism—the political imperatives of whiteness.  Driving the insatiable settler urge to possess every last thing, fueling the desire to assume and consume imagined Indigenous 'identities.' Indeed, such self-serving self-Indigenization is very much a byproduct of the colonial imagination, a contorted construct which privileges the individual over the collective, the racial over the relational, and possession over peoplehood. 

So says podcast regular Kim TallBear, who, by the end of this episode, so thoroughly unpacks the problematic formulation and foundation of so-called Indigenous "identity"—a hyper-individualized right to resources invoked in isolation from those it performatively pantomimes—you may never want to use the term again. A talk she delivered last month in Ottawa, it took place at a two-day symposium convened by the Wabano Centre—an Indigenous Centre for Excellence in Health Service based in the national capital region. One of four core presenters at the event, Kim shared the stage with Drew Hayden Taylor, Brenda Macdougall and Pam Palmater, with MI's Rick Harp as emcee/moderator for the event.

CREDITS: 'One more day in orbit' by Aldous Ichnite (CC BY); 'Horror background atmosphere for horror and mystical' by Universfield (CC BY); 'Goshen's Lonely' by Gagmesharkoff (CC BY). Our intro/xtro theme is 'nesting' by birocratic.

Mar 9, 2024

This week: 'Close Encounters of the Colonial Kind,' the title of a talk given by our very own Kim TallBear (University of Alberta professor of Native Studies) at “Of the Land and Water: Indigenous Sexualities, Genders and Ways of Being,” hosted earlier this year in Whitehorse, YK by the Dechinta Centre for Research and Learning.

Although rooted in her by-now familiar terrains of sexuality and science, Kim’s monologue was a bit of a departure from what we’re used to here on the podcast: delivered in the fictionalized voice of ‘IZ,’ she’s the personification of an Indigenous-driven movement of ‘unapologetic intellectual promiscuity,’ or what IZ herself calls “critical polydisciplinamorous engagement.” 

An adaptation of her 2023 Substack post / 2021 essay by the same name, Kim’s keynote so aroused our curiosity we had to have her flesh out the body of thought behind it. In the first of this two-part discussion, she walks MI host/producer Rick Harp and MI audio editor Cassidy Villebrun-Buracas through ‘IZ Speaks Back’ and ‘IZ Confesses,’ which together make up the first half of her talk.

CREDITS: ♬ 'A Moment' by Mr Smith (CC BY 4.0); 'Cryin' in my Beer' by Jason Shaw (CC BY 4.0); 'As Time Passes' (via ZapSplat.com); a sample of 'Staying’s Worse Than Leaving' by Sunny Sweeney; our program intro/xtro theme is 'nesting' by birocratic. SFX: 'Deep Space Vibrations Ambience Loop' by rhodesmas; 'Ambient space 4' by DylanTheFish.

Feb 27, 2024

On this week’s Indigenous round table: legal limbo? Did the Supreme Court's recent rejection of Quebec’s constitutional challenge to Bill C-92 really cement the self-determination of Indigenous peoples on child welfare? Or did it seal in the status quo, one where the feds still hold all the cards and all the funds?

A ruling described as “very beautiful” by one leader, hailed as paving “the road… for the transfer of authority” by another, such celebrations risk missing the core point of C-92’s critics: that it was always a half measure, keeping full authority and jurisdiction in the grips of the Canadian government. Making the supreme hype about the Supreme Court’s ruling all the more puzzling.

Now that the pixie dust has settled, MEDIA INDIGENA regulars Brock Pitawanakwat (associate professor of Indigenous Studies at York University) and Ken Williams (associate professor with the University of Alberta’s department of drama) joined host/producer Rick Harp to try and decipher where things now stand after the ruling, drawing on the perspective of well-known child welfare advocate Cindy Blackstock, executive director of the First Nations Child & Family Caring Society.

// CREDITS: Our theme is 'nesting' by birocratic. Other music (i.e., bridges to and from Cindy Blackstock interview) sourced from Zapsplat.com.

Feb 13, 2024

This episode, another ‘mini’ INDIGENA (the easy-peasy version of MEDIA INDIGENA)—one where the first item went way longer than anyone expected!  Joining host/producer Rick Harp on Tuesday, February 6th were Kim TallBear (University of Alberta professor in the Faculty of Native Studies) and Candis Callison (UBC Associate Professor in the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies and the School for Public Policy and Global Affairs), as they discuss the multiple Indigenous actors within Mni Sóta Makoce who helped drive the process of reimagining Minnesota’s contested state flag, the pushback, and the possible perils of engaging and enabling settler symbolism.

CREDITS: 𝅘𝅥𝅯 'All Your Faustian Bargains' by Steve Combs (CC BY 4.0); 'Guatemala - Panama March' by Heftone Banjo Orchestra (CC BY 4.0). 🕬 SFX 'Hockey fanfare' by jobro.

Jan 24, 2024

For our first mini INDIGENA of 2024, Candis Callison (associate professor in the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies and Graduate School of Journalism at UBC) and Kenneth T. Williams (associate professor with the University of Alberta’s department of drama), joined host/producer Rick Harp this Friday, January 19th to discuss:

  • Norway to pay Sámi reindeer herders millions for violating their human rights
  • How Canada led efforts to weaken original UN Indigenous rights declaration
  • Why the Yellowhead Institute no longer tracks Canada's fulfilment of the TRC Calls to Action
  • The Canadian Space Agency seeks Indigenous interns

CREDITS: 'All Your Faustian Bargains' and 'Love Is Chemical' by Steve Combs (CC BY 4.0); 'Brass Burrough' by Cagey House (CC BY); 'Free Tutti Church Organ (F 008)' by Lobo Loco (CC BY).

Jan 7, 2024

For our final episode of 2023, a live audience recording from the spring, when we took part in the ICA 2023 Pre-conference, “20 Years of Podcasting: Mapping the Contours of Podcast Studies,” hosted May 24th and 25th at Toronto Metropolitan University.

Entitled, “Independent Indigenous podcasting as knowledge production,” this four-person roundtable was a rare opportunity to bring folks together in one place—Rick Harp, Brock Pitawanakwat, Kim TallBear—along with Candis Callison, who joined us remotely. Here’s the essence of our event:

"Curious about podcasts as academic avenues, our discussion will explore both pragmatic and conceptual outcomes of independent Indigenous podcasting as a form of knowledge production, for both media and the academy… There is much overlap on [MI’s] roundtable between media-makers and academics, many of whom are regularly asked for media commentary on current Indigenous topics. Several of us work(ed) within Indigenous and mainstream print and broadcast media. We will explore how producing for a primarily Indigenous audience compares to addressing a mass audience."

// CREDITS: Our theme is 'nesting' by birocratic.

Jan 6, 2024

This week, our penultimate program of 2023 reunites Kim and Ken for another mini INDIGENA (the rough and ready version of MEDIA INDIGENA) to discuss an array of items, including:

  • a response to pushback against our discussion (ep 334) about state vs. federal recognition of tribes in the U.S.

  • the mass resignation of CN Rail’s Indigenous Advisory Council, citing “the company's ineffective use of the Council's strategic input”

  • plans announced for Anishinaabemowin version of the first ‘Star Wars’ movie

  • Canadian bureaucrats crow about their new eagle-shaped correctional building “to support Indigenous inmates on their rehabilitation journey,” to which Twitter naturally reacted

CREDITS: 'All Your Faustian Bargains' and 'Love Is Chemical' by Steve Combs (CC BY 4.0); Lifecycle by Fabian Measures (CC BY). Edited by Cassidy Villebrun-Buracas and Rick Harp.

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