Susan Dionne challenges her students with a similar task. Rather than being in tune with corn, however, she asks her students to look within themselves to determine what they know and challenge the bias they find. This is done by creating a compilation of cultural artifacts that reflect their associations with Aboriginal people or knowledge along with content from the course or genuine art. The result is a stereoscopic collage of images and reflections that mark the path from ignorance and innocence to a deeper understanding of themselves.
In reading the various responses granted by my peers regarding their realtionships with Aboriginal people and knowledge, it quickly became clear to me that there was a great divide between those who wish all people to be treated equal, but claim great ignorance of Aboriginal people, culture and knowledge, and those who have tasted just enough knowledge to know that no amount of equality can compensate for the “genocide, land removals, forced assimilation, “breeding out”, and legislation which essentially legalises the Aboriginal out of existance.” (King in Dion 2007 )
Prior to the cumulations of my PDP experience, I would have identified with those who champion equality above all. Similar to the student identified as Jessica in Dion’s article, I have always felt that I have a very open mind and strongly disprove of racism of any kind. My knowledge of Aboriginal people seemed only to occur in books such as Indian in the Cabinet or Pocahontas . Since then I have encountered my own revelations and self-doubt that disgusted me with “false images and perceptions of Indigenous peoples, their culture, and history. (Jessica in Dione 2007) I was left at the end of the year with feelings of isolation, overwhelming guilt, and many questions for which I had no answers.
“History is not purely factual,” writes one anonymous student in the compilation of Responses to Question Regarding Students’ Relationships with Aboriginal Peoples (AP), “[it is] anecdotal administered though story or text, through the mind and opinion of the person accounting the history.” While I always knew this, it never really hit home before: the history I've been taught was one written by the victors. This epiphany affects all education I've received, and while I do not think ill of my schooling or my teachers, I am thankful for this realization. Looking back over my own history, my experiences with Aboriginal peoples were more frequent and in depth then I would have thought. Looking forward, I relish this class and the information that will come from it. Perhaps then I will be able to make peace with all those unanswered questions, and that disquieting feeling that will never go away[Dv10] .
References Dion, S. D. (December 2007). Disrupting Molded Images: Identities, responsibilities and relationships - teachers and indigenous subject material. Teacher Education, 329-342.
Hogan, L. (Accessed 2013). A Different Yield. Reclaiming Indigenious Voice and Vision, 115-123.
Wey, D. v. (2013). Compilation of Responses to Questions Regarding Students' Relationships with Aboriginal Peoples (AP).
[Dv1]Insert year and each time you cite an author for the first time in a new paragraph
[Dv2](Cited in Keller, 1983)
This is insightful
[Dv10]This is a very thoughtful analysis Heather and you effectively found a thread that could tie the two readings together effectively. Further you wove in the student responses that impacted your thinking.
[Dv11]van der Wey