held July 10-14 at Université de Québec à Montréal.
[Dr. Gada Mahrouse was originally intended to co-facilitate but had to cancel]
As this conference will take place in Canada, a country that has officially committed to a “Truth and Reconciliation” process to improve relationships between Indigenous peoples and settlers, this workshop will examine the ways in which indigenous/First Nations comedians in Canada engage humour as a means of reconciliation and healing (Taylor 2005).Addressing one of the guiding conference theme questions of why we comply to the force of humour “even in our most darkest and serious hours”, the format of this instructional workshop will be first screening various clips of Indigenous/First Nations comedians who are using the genre of stand-up to draw attention to the very dark and serious injustices they continue to face, followed by a co-facilitated structured discussion. Some of the comedians we will consider include: Don Burnstick, Melissa Deleary, Thomas King, Drew Hayden Taylor.The specific objectives of the workshop are three-fold. 1) To profile the work of these comedians to International audiences as a way of contextualizing and locally situating comedy as a form of critical and creative resistance (Simpson 2004). 2) To contemplate whether the pedagogical possibilities of these comedic interventions can teach about colonial violence and injustices. 3) To discuss the intended and unintended (Weaver 2011; Kunzle, 2014) effects of using comedy as a means of contestation and a type of social action.Works Cited:
Kunzle, C. (2014). Is this a joke? Montreal: Les Editions Lafaillite.
Taylor, D. H. (2005). Me Funny. Taylor, D. H. (Ed).Vancouver, B.C.; Berkeley, Calif.: Douglas & McIntyre.
Simpson, Leanne R. 2004. “Anticolonial Strategies for the Recovery and Maintenance of Indigenous Knowledge.” American Indian Quarterly 18 (3/4): 373-378.
Weaver, S. (2011). The rhetoric of racist humour: US, UK and global race joking. Farnham, Surrey, England; Burlington, VT: Ashgate.
First Nations comics and humourists featured in photos above, (clockwise from top left) : Melissa Deleary and Celeste Hayward, Thomas King, Don Burnstick and Drew Hayden Taylor.