STARS AND SKY STORIES: INDIGENOUS COSMOLOGY & WESTERN ASTRONOMY
Thursday, May 31, 6:30pm
Verity, 111 Queen Street East
Join us for a fascinating discussion that takes us from the origins of life on Earth to the edge of the universe. For tens of thousands of years Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island have mapped the night sky, star systems, and space-time geometry, establishing an expansive view of the world and a body of scientific knowledge that has often been ignored and erased.
In this REDTalk, we explore multiple knowledge systems of cosmology and the many points of intersection between Indigenous cosmology and Western astronomy.
REDTalks host and curator Sandra Laronde will be joined by cultural astronomers Wilfred Buck (Manitoba First Nations Science Education Resource Centre, Winnipeg) and Michael Wassegiizhig Price (Bemidji State University, Minnesota), astrophysicist Annette S. Lee (St. Cloud University, Minnesota), and astrobiologist Daniella M. Scalice (NASA, Maryland) as we investigate and discuss two bodies of knowledge systems that will be equally valued.
Join us for a meet and greet at 6:30pm in the Toronto Room at the Verity Club (111e Queen Street East) followed by the REDTalk at 7pm.
FUTURE FORWARD: Be part of our space odyssey as these themes will be further explored in Red Sky Performance’s world premiere of "Trace", a sumptuous new dance/live music production that explores Anishinaabe star and sky stories that map our origin and future evolution. ("Trace" will be performed from October 30 - November 11, 2018 at Canadian Stage).
About the Panelists:
Wilfred Buck is a member of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation, currently employed with the MFNERC as a Science Facilitator. He obtained his B.Ed. & Post Bacc. from the University of Manitoba. As an educator Wilfred has had the opportunity and good fortune to travel to South and Central America as well as Europe and has met, shared with, and listened to Indigenous peoples from all over the world. He is a husband, father of four, son, uncle, brother, nephew, story-teller, mad scientist, teacher, singer, pipe-carrier, sweat lodge keeper, old person and sun dance leader. As a Science Facilitator with MFNERC, Wilfred was given the mandate to “put a First Nation perspective in the sciences”. The easiest way to go about doing this, he was told, was to look up.
Annette S. Lee is an astrophysicist, artist and the Director of the Native Skywatchers (NSW) research and programming initiative. She has over 28 years of experience in education as a teacher, university instructor, educator, program administrator, professional visual artist, and researcher. Currently Annette is an Associate Professor of Astronomy & Physics at St. Cloud State University (SCSU), Director of the SCSU Planetarium, and an Indigenous STEM consultant for Fond du Lac Tribal & Community College. Annette is mixed-race Native American and her communities are Ojibwe and D(L)akota.
Michael Waasegiizhig Price served as a faculty member in the Indigenous Studies Department at Bemidji State University and dedicated 16 years of service to tribal colleges in Minnesota as both a faculty member and administrator. Michael’s academic pursuits are Native American ethnobotany, Indigenous Astronomy and integrating Anishinaabe language and culture into the natural science curriculum. Michael earned a Master of Science in Forestry at the University of Montana and a Bachelor of Arts in Biology at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. He is currently working on his teaching certificate in Anishinaabe language at Bemidji State University.
Daniella M. Scalice has been the Education and Communications Lead at the NASA Astrobiology Program since 2001. In addition to leading and supporting the astrobiology community in its education and outreach efforts, she co-founded the NASA and the Navajo Nation project with her Diné colleagues in 2005. Now in its 14th year, the partnership brings together scientific and cultural knowledge into programs for Diné youth, supporting them to pursue STEM without compromising their cultural identity.
We gratefully acknowledge the Department Canadian Heritage and the Ontario Arts Council for its generous support of the 2018-19 REDTalks Series.
Cover Image: Biboonkeonini-Wintermaker, Close up from “Ojibwe Giizhig Anung Masinaaigan”, A. Lee, W. Wilson, C. Gawboy, 2012.