Programme of Digital Teach-Ins

Through Sept 9-10, 2020, Scholar Strike Canada is hosting public digital teach-ins on state-sanctioned violence as part of the systemic violence that materially disenfranchises Black, Indigenous and racialized people, and is a contemporary function of slavery, carcerality and colonialism in the world today. 

We will also be live-streaming the teach-ins on our YouTube Channel. These teach-ins will be recorded and housed in perpetuity on our website and our YouTube Channel for students and educators to use.

Wednesday September 9th

10:30am – 12pm EDT
Abolition or death: Confronting police forces in Canada
Link to Youtube Livestream
Presenter: Desmond Cole, Writer and journalist
Moderated by Beverly Bain, Lecturer, Woman and Gender Studies/Department of Historical Studies.  University of Toronto Mississauga Campus

As more white Canadians become aware of our country’s investment in white supremacy, too many are inclined to seek reforms instead of abolishing our violent institutions and systems. Why is abolition only conceivable for a different place and time than our own? What becomes possible for Black life when we’re willing to directly confront the state and its violent police systems?

12:30pm – 2pm EDT
Solemn Promises on Stolen Land: Policing and Treaty-Breaking on 1492 Land Back Lane
Link to Youtube Livestream
Elder Eileen Antone, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto, a member of the Oneida of the Thames First Nation, Turtle Clan
Courtney Skye, Research Fellow at the Yellowhead Institute, Haudenosaunee citizen from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory
Kevin White, Assistant Professor in the Department for the Study of Religion and Centre for Indigenous Studies at the University of Toronto, Mohawk from Akwesasne
Dale Turner, Associate Professor,  Political Science/Centre for Indigenous Studies, University of Toronto
Moderated by Susan Hill, Associate Professor of History and the Director of the Centre for Indigenous Studies at the University of Toronto, Haudenosaunee citizen from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory

This public, online teach-in will address how Indigenous efforts to protect and reclaim land through exercising their jurisdiction and treaty rights often result in police arrests and violence. Focused particularly on the ongoing 1492 Land Back Lane Haudenosaunee reclamation at a real estate development in Caledonia, the teach-in brings together professors from the Centre for Indigenous Studies (CIS) and the Department for the Study of Religion (DSR) at the University of Toronto, as well as researcher Courtney Skye of the Yellowhead Institute. Skye was arrested on September 3 while doing her research at 1492 Land Back Lane. Professor and Elder Eileen Antone will open and close the teach-in, which will be moderated by Prof. Susan Hill, Director of the Centre for Indigenous Studies, and include Courtney Skye and Professor Kevin White (CIS/DSR).

2:30pm – 4pm EDT
Gender, Colonialism and Anti-Black Police Racist Violence
Link to Youtube Livestream
Erica Violet Lee, Writer and community organizer from Saskatoon
El Jones, Poet, activist, educator and co-founder of the Black Power Hour, a radio show developed with prisoners
Moderated by OmiSoore Dryden, Associate Professor, James R. Johnston (JRJ) Chair in Black Canadian Studies, Dalhousie University

This teach-in will focus on the current context for Black and Indigenous people in this country as they confront and resist the ongoing racist, colonial violence perpetrated in and by police and other militarized and carceral institutions. What does resistance and refusal of anti-black and anti-Indigenous colonial violence look like?  What does it mean to abolish and to liberate?  

4:30pm – 6pm EST
Scholars and Educators for Black Lives
Link to Youtube Livestream
Presenter: Sandy Hudson, Toronto-based organizer, communications specialist, political strategist, public intellectual, writer and abolition activist.
Moderator: Janelle Brady, PhD candidate in OISE’s Social Justice Education department at OISE. 

The Teach-In will focus on the realities of anti-Black police violence in Toronto and across Canada, to ignite actions by participants to take a stand, and not stop until all Black people can live with safety, freedom, rights and justice.

5pm – 6pm EDT
Artists for the Revolution: Creative Activisms in the Movement for Black Lives”
Organized by the School of the Arts at McMaster University
Link to Eventbrite page
Syrus Marcus Ware, LTF Assistant Professor at McMaster University in the School of the Arts
Ravyn Wngz is an African, Bermudian, Mohawk, 2Spirit, queer and transcendent individual. Ravyn works to change all hierarchical mainstream arts and dance spaces by centering disability justice and advocating for representations of marginalized LGBTTIQQ2S communities.

Additionally, the School of the Arts McMaster University has organized a roundtable conversation “Artists for the Revolution: Creative Activisms in the Movement for Black Lives” with Syrus Ware and Ravyn Wngz. This will be a zoom event and possibly live streamed on you tube. 

7pm – 8:30 PM EDT
Migrant Workers in Canada: Unfree Labour on Stolen Land

Link to Youtube Livestream
Min Sook Lee is an Associate Professor at OCAD University and documentary filmmaker whose most recent doc ‘Migrant Dreams’ can be viewed here.
Chris Ramsaroop is a PhD candidate at the Ontario Institute of Studies in Education at the University of Toronto and an organizer with Justice for Migrant Workers.
Adrian Smith is an Associate Professor at the Osgoode Hall Law School faculty.  He is co-editor of Unfree Labour? Struggles of Migrant and Immigrant Workers in Canada (PM Press, with Professor Aziz Choudry).
Evelyn Encalada Grez is a transnational labour scholar, organizer and co-founder of Justice for Migrant Workers and Assistant Professor in Labour Studies at Simon Fraser University.

Thursday September 10th

9:30 – 10:15am EDT
Legacy of Policing Indigenous Lands and Bodies in Canada 
Link to Youtube Livestream
Presenter: Dr. Pam Palmater
Moderator: Bev Bain

11 – 11:30am EDT
Indigenous Responses to Black Resistance
Link to Youtube Livestream
Presenter: Bonita Lawrence, Professor, Department of Humanities at York University

In the heightening of Black resistance to the ongoing murders of Black people by the police—this time to the maiming of Jacob Blake, shot 7 times in the back in Kenosha, Wisconsin—it’s important to articulate why Indigenous peoples have supported Black Lives Matter protests.  And in some respects this involves looking at the commonalities between Indigenous peoples and Black people—as well as some of the distinctions that activists have overcome in working together.   Because Black Lives Matter has supported Indigenous land protectors—while Indigenous people overwhelmingly came out in protest over the murder of George Floyd over the summer.  I want to address the nature of our relations.

12pm -1:30pm EDT
Black Tax and the Invisible Labour of Black Women in the Academy
Link to Youtube Livestream
Presenter: Andrea Davis, Associate Professor in the Department of Humanities, York University
Moderated by Michele Antoinette, Professor, Department of History, York University

This teach-in discusses the difficult terrain Black women navigate in the academy. It raises questions about what is at stake when a Black female educator—marked by the multiple intersections of gender, race, ethnicity and nationality—is made to stand in as the singular representative voice of Black students and faculty; when her body, culturally marked by the memories of a traumatic past and present, becomes one of the texts through which her students and colleagues learn.

2pm – 6pm ADT
Scholars’ Strike Nova Scotia: Teach In for Black Lives
Link to Facebook page

Join scholars from across Nova Scotia actively engaged in ending all forms of racist, carceral, institutional and systemic forms of violence.

Panellists include:
Rachel Zellars, Saint Mary’s University
Alex Khasnabish, Mount Saint Vincent University
El Jones, University of King’s College
Anthony Gracey, Acadia University
Chris Frazer, St. Francis Xavier University

Moderator: OmiSoore Dryden, Dalhousie University
More scholars to be confirmed.

2pm – 3pm EDT
Co-Conspiring Against Carceral Systems
Link to Youtube Livestream
Megan Scribe (Ininiw iskwew), Acting Assistant Professor, Sociology, Ryerson University
Eve Tuck (Unangax̂), Associate Professor, Social Justice Education, OISE, University of Toronto
Billy-Ray Belcourt (Cree) Assistant Professor, Creative Writing, University of British Columbia

Engaging Indigenous feminist theory and Indigenous queer studies, this teach-in shares findings from Megan Scribe’s doctoral research, Indigenous Girlhood: Narratives of Colonial Care in Law and Literature and new work by Billy-Ray Belcourt. Canada has taken legal responsibility over an unprecedented number of Indigenous girls entering correctional facilities, educational boarding arrangements, and foster care, yet these systems actually place Indigenous girls at greater risk of violence, disappearance, and death. Scribe’s analysis attends to the need to abolish the many layers of carceral systems experienced by Indigenous girls. 

Billy-Ray Belcourt will then attend to conspiracy as a galvanizing concept of both rioting against injustice, and also breathing together. Scribe will connect this thinking about conspiracy to her recent essay, co-written with Sefanit Habtom, on the importance for co-conspirator relationships (Simmons, 2017) between Black, Indigenous, and Black-Indigenous peoples. Eve Tuck will serve as a collaborative discussant.

3:30pm – 5pm EDT
Two Crises: A Virus and Labour

Link to Youtube Livestream
Presenter: Rinaldo Walcott, Professor, Women and Gender Studies Institute, University of Toronto
Moderated by LLana James, PhD candidate at the Faculty of Medicine’s Rehabilitation Sciences Institute

This session will attempt to discuss the neoliberal organization of academic labour. Beginning with observations of how COVID has put academic labour in crisis the session also suggests that resistance to anti-Black racism also puts the academy and its “normal business” in crisis two. 

5:30pm – 7pm EDT
Race to Incarcerate in the University
Link to Youtube Livestream
Idil Abdiliahi, Assistant Professor, School of Disability Studies, Ryerson University
Beverly Bain, Lecturer, Woman and Gender Studies/Department of Historical Studies.  University of Toronto Mississauga Campus
Moderated by Rosalind Hampton,  Assistant Professor, Department of Social Justice Education, OISE, University of Toronto

What does it mean for universities to invest in a militarized culture that increases the powers of campus police to arrest and handcuff students on campus, in an emotional crisis? In this current context of increased police violence against Black, Indigenous and racialized peoples why are universities ignoring the calls for defunding and the removal of policing personnel? What investments do they have in facilitating the build up and extension of the carceral state when they should be seeking alternative approaches to safety for the university community?  

These and other issues pertaining to the university and its racist carceral policies and practices will be discussed here. 

Other teach-ins we support:

September 2nd 2020, 3pm – 6pm EDT
Policing Black And Indigenous Lives In Canada: A Digital Teach-In
, BC Civil Liberties Association 
Youtube Link

Relying on their on-the-ground experience and legal expertise, speakers will address the role of policing in expanding the colonial state, the evidence of police violence and discrimination, current strategies for transformative change, and how people can get involved in the movement.


El Jones is a recipient of the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission Burnley “Rocky” Jones award and co-founder of the Black Power Hour, a radio show developed with prisoners.
Dr. Pam Palmater is a Mi’kmaw lawyer, professor, author, and social justice activist from Eel River Bar First Nation. Her extensive writing focuses on Indigenous law, politics, and governance.
Reakash Walters is a writer, community advocate, and articling student who is dreaming alternatives to policing and punishment.
Meenakshi Mannoe is the Criminalization and Policing Campaigner at PIVOT Legal Society.
Moderated by Latoya Farrell, BC Civil Liberties Association Policy Staff Counsel

This event is brought to you by the working group: Latoya Farrell of BCCLA, lawyer Avnish Nanda, and professor Asad Kiyani.

September 10th, 2020, 12:00 – 2:00 pm
Black and Indigenous Histories of Survival and Solidarity
Join via the Caribbean Studies FB page

12-1 p.m.:
Melanie Newton, Associate Professor, History, University of Toronto
Shauna Sweeney, Assistant Professor, History and Women and Gender Studies, University of Toronto
Tamara Walker, Associate Professor, History, University of Toronto

1-2 p.m.: 
Safia Gahayr, OISE, University of Toronto
Malavika Kasturi, Associate Professor, History, University of Toronto
Karyn Recollet, Assistant Professor, Women and Gender Studies, University of Toronto

September 10th, 2020 03:00pm EDT
Black Studies, African Studies:  Scholar Strike Canada Reflections from the Dr. Kenneth Melville McGill Black Faculty Caucus
Zoom link

September 11th, 2020 – 9:30am–11:30am EDT 
Colonialism(s) and the global policing of dissent

Link to join

September 18th 2020, 2pm – 4pm EDT
Black Life: A Toronto Teach-In on Black Studies, Literature, Visual Arts, and Disability Studies

This teach-in brings together five Toronto-based scholars and artists from York University, the University of Toronto, Ryerson University and OCAD University to discuss the ways in which their scholarship interprets and engages with the historic pasts and presents of Black life in Canada and other Black diasporas. Rather than centering the discussion of Black life as solely a narrative of tragedy or victimhood, this teach-in considers the interventions interdisciplinary Black scholars and scholarship make in elucidating questions of Black life and Black livingness. Christina Sharpe, Rinaldo Walcott, Idil Abdillahi, Andrea Fatona, and Canisia Lubrin will draw on their work with a variety of materials in Black Studies, Literature, Poetry, Visual Studies and Disability Studies to think about the challenges and possibilities of Black life within and beyond the present historical moment.
This event is hosted by the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, York University and moderated by Andrea Davis.

September 24th, 10:00am – 12:30pm EDT
Status of Women and Equity Committee Workshop : “Combatting anti-Black racism in the academy: A primer for faculty”

Link to register

Facilitator: Paige Galette
OCUFA’s Status of Women and Equity Committee is hosting training workshop is entitled “Combatting anti-Black racism in the academy: A primer for faculty”. The workshop will be open to all members of OCUFA. Please register for the workshop here as soon as possible. The workshop will be facilitated by Paige Galette who fights tirelessly for social justice – through Black liberation, the Queer movement, the Women’s movement and organized labour. You can read Paige’s most recent essay in Until We Are Free: Reflections on Black Lives Matter in Canada. The workshop will aim to give participants tools to combat anti-Black racism in their roles as faculty, in their associations, on campus, and beyond. Participants will be given time to reflect and ask questions throughout the session. In order to help Paige tailor the session to meet the needs of participants, we encourage you to register early and to fill out the short questionnaire on the registration page.

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