We are excited to continue our monthly CICR Reading Club series, hosted this Fall 2023 in partnership with the Institute for Native American Studies. Our goal is to have a conversation as a community around a set of shared readings, while exploring new paths forward for conservation.
This semester’s theme is “Legacies on the Landscape.” We will take a closer look at the ways that academic institutions, including the University of Georgia, are reckoning with their historical and contemporary legacies of land use and dispossession and discuss how we might move forward in ways that acknowledge these institutional legacies and seek to re-build relationships with Tribal nations and the land.
The dates and themes for this year’s Reading Clubs are below; unless otherwise notified, each be held in the CICR Conference Room 238:
- Friday, September 22, 10-11:30 am – Land Acknowledgements
- Monday, October 16, 3:30-5 pm – Land Back
- Wednesday, November 15, 12-1:30 pm – Implications for Land-Grant Institutions
We aim to engage with both critical and constructive perspectives on these topics, which have grown in prominence alongside calls to decolonize the academy. We approach this series with an optimistic view that there is a natural allyship between the goals of biological conservation and Indigenous-led conservation and resurgence. Some of the questions we might explore include the following:
- Should UGA practice land acknowledgements? If so, what should and should not feature in them? (Sept. 22)
- What is land back? Should land grant institutions, the federal government and/or conservation organizations be engaged in discussions about land back? If so, what might that entail? (Oct. 16)
- What accountabilities does UGA (and other land grant universities) have to their histories of Native American land dispossession? (Nov. 15)
For more information, we also recommend: Lee & Ahtone (2020) Land Grab Universities which provides a strong visual and descriptive background on the ways that land-grant universities have benefitted from land dispossession.
Everyone is welcome to join the discussion, regardless of prior familiarity with these topics.
If you are able to join this or future Reading Clubs, please RSVP here: https://forms.gle/q3BLeetsg7uxGNqE7.