Decolonization, resistance and resurgence: Enacting alternative geographies | CALL FOR PAPERS | thru Oct 4 2014

some amazingly badass WOC scholar friends at UW in seattle are organizing this session - please email them for more details, see below


Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers – Chicago, April 21–25 2015

Call for Papers

Decolonization, resistance and resurgence: Enacting alternative geographies 

Organizers: Michelle Daigle and Magie Ramírez, University of Washington


This session(s) will critically engage with alternative geographies of decolonization, resistance and resurgence. We seek to engage with critical (post/anti-colonial, race and feminist) geographic scholarship on alternative geographies resisting colonial violence, intervention and seduction (Said 1978; Hall 1991; Escobar 2001; Harris 2002; Mbembe 2003; Castree 2004; Hart 2006; Mollett 2006; Nagar et. al 2006; McKittrick and Woods 2007; Werner 2011; Goeman 2013). As we think through coloniality as a spatial process (Quijano and Wallerstein 1992; Moraña et al. 2008; Mignolo 2011), we recognize the ways that places, lands, bodies, and psyches are entangled in “histories of accumulation, disinvestment, violence, dispossession, and resistance in relation to other places” (Werner 2011: 1576). But just as coloniality remains pervasive, the forms of resistance produced by oppressed peoples invoke a counter-force of decoloniality, an alternative geography. Alternative geographies of resistance are built upon a decolonization of the self, a re-formation of place-based identities and relationships, and the rebuilding of Indigenous forms of nationhood. Resistance is not solely oppositional, but part of a transformative political praxis of decolonization, resurgence and resilience.

Alternative geographies create oppositional spaces and practices that seek to decolonize the present. In deconstructing the legacies and contemporary forms of colonial violence inflicted on Indigenous lands and bodies, Indigenous studies and activism has re-centered place-based Indigenous knowledge and experiences as a foundation to self-determination (Alfred 1999, 2005; Alfred and Corntassel 2005; Corntassel 2012; Coulthard 2007, 2014; Simpson 2008, 2011; Goeman 2013). Chicana feminism theorizes how a decolonial imaginary enables oppressed peoples to resist the colonial present and envision a better future (Anzaldúa 1987; Pérez 1999; Sandoval 2000). Black geographies also draw decolonial threads, where black experiences of domination and resistance offer an alternate telling of history and create oppositional spatial practices (Woods 1998; McKittrick 2006, 2011, 2013; McKittrick and Woods 2007). In this session we consider the following questions: How do alternative geographies resist the coloniality of the present, and imagine decolonial futures?  Where do we see decolonial spaces being formed in which these imaginings become tangible? How do alternative geographies reframe the political? How is decoloniality embodied and utilized to heal from historical trauma and internal colonization? How do these alternative geographies push the way we think about the production of space and, how places shape us?

Potential themes may include, but are by no means limited to:

  • Indigenous self-determination and grassroots activism
  • Building solidarity and cross-cultural/trans-Indigenous alliances across colonial boundaries and borders
  • Decolonial knowledge production through oral histories and testimonio
  • The use of art to decolonize discourse and space
  • Geographies of slavery, the plantation, and black dispossession
  • The role of women, youth or two-spirited peoples in decolonization
  • Cultural revitalization of language, art, ceremonies and land-based practices
  • Decolonizing through Indigenous food practices
  • Critical engagements with state-led initiatives on sovereignty
  • Decolonization in Settler communities
  • Alternative geographies and social media: #BlackLivesMatter, Undocuqueer, Indigenous activism etc.
  • Decolonizing borders, migration, and the borderlands #MigrationIsBeautiful
  • Alternative geographies of sexuality
  • Decolonial activist or social movements
  • Decolonizing the body through reproductive justice and healing practices


We welcome and encourage alternative presentation styles.

If you would like to participate in this session, please submit a 250-word abstract by Friday October 3, 2014 to:

Michelle Daigle and Magie Ramírez


Alfred, T. 1999. Peace, power, righteousness: An Indigenous manifesto. Don Mills, ON: Oxford University Press.

__. 2005. Wasase: Indigenous pathways of action and freedom. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press.

Alfred, T. and J. Corntassel. 2005. Being Indigenous: Resurgences against contemporary colonialism.  Government and Opposition40(4): 597-614.

Anzaldua, G. 1987. Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza.

Castree, N. 2004. Differential geographies: Place, indigenous rights and ‘local’ resources. Political Geography (23): 133-167.   

Corntassel, J. 2012. Re-envisioning resurgence: Indigenous pathways to decolonization and sustainable self-determination.Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society, 1: 1, 86-101.  

Coulthard, G. 2007.  Subjects of empire:  Indigenous peoples and the ‘politics of recognition’ in Canada. Contemporary Political Theory 6(4): 437-460.

__. 2014. Red skin white masks: Rejecting the colonial politics of recognition. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. 

Escobar, A. 2001. Culture sits in places. Political Geography, 20(2): 139-174.   

Goeman, M. 2013. Mark my words: Native women mapping our nations. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.  

Hall, S. 1991.  “Old and New Identities, Old and New Ethnicities” Pp.41-68 in Culture, Globalization, and the World-System, edited by Anthony King. Birmingham:  SUNY.

Harris, C. 2002.  Making Native space: Colonialism, resistance and reserves in British Columbia.  Vancouver, BC:  University of British Columbia Press.

Hart, G. 2006.  Denaturalizing dispossession: Critical ethnography in the age of resurgent imperialism.  Antipode, 38: 5, 977-1004.    

Mbembe, A. 2003. Necropolitics. Public Culture 15: 1, 11-40.

McKittrick, K. 2006. Demonic grounds: Black Women and the cartographies of struggle. U. Minnesota Press. 

__. 2011. On plantations, prisons, and a black sense of place. Social and Cultural Geography, 12: 947-963.

__. 2013. Plantation futures. Small Axe: A Caribbean Journal of Criticism. 17: 1-15.

McKittrick, K., & Woods, C. A. 2007. Black geographies and the politics of place. Toronto, ON, Between the Lines.

Mignolo, W. 2011. The Darker Side of Western Modernity: Global Futures, Decolonial Options. Durham: Duke UP.

Mollett, S. 2006. Race and natural resource conflicts in Honduras: The Miskito and Garifuna struggle for Lasa Pulan, Latin American Research Review 41 (1): 76-101.

Moraña, M., Dussel, E. and Jáuregui, C. 2008. Coloniality at large: Latin America and the postcolonial debate. Durham: Duke University Press.

Nagar, R. and the Sangtin Writers. 2006. Playing with Fire: Feminist thought and action through seven lives in India.  University of Minnesota Press.

Pérez, E. 1999. The decolonial imaginary: Writing Chicanas into history. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

Quijano, A., & Wallerstein, I. 1992. Americanity as a concept, or the Americas in the modern world- system. International Social Science Journal. 44, 549-558.

Said, E. 1978. Orientalism. New York, NY: Pantheon

Simpson, L. 2008. Our elder brothers: The lifeblood of resurgences. In Lighting the eighth fire: The liberation, resurgence, and protection of Indigenous nations, ed. L. Simpson. Winnipeg, MB: Arbeiter Ring Publishing, 73-87.

__. 2013. Dancing on our turtle’s backs: Stories of Nishnaabeg re-creation, resurgence, and a new emergence. Winnipeg, MB: Arbeiter Ring Publishing. 

Sandoval, C. 2000. Methodology of the oppressed. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.

Werner, M. 2011.  Coloniality and the contours of global production in the Dominican Republic and Haiti.  Antipode 43: 5, 1573-1597.  

Woods, C. A. 1998. Development arrested: the blues and plantation power in the Mississippi Delta. London, Verso.

         Margaret Marietta Ramírez
  Doctoral Candidate in Geography
          University of Washington

Fatim III, Paris, France, 1997

Nizar qabani

The Blonds SS12

(Source: michiko-malandro, via black--lamb)


check out the dope Collaboration between Congolese photographer Shako Oteka and his Protégé Basile Shingu. #CongoSwagg

-Alec Lomami

"She does not know her beauty. She thinks her brown body has no glory. If she could dance, naked, under palm trees, and see her image in the river, she would know. But there are no palm trees on the streets and the dishwasher gives back no image."

- Nina Simone - Images (via iyaricorazon)

(Source: themiseducationoflife, via knowledgeequalsblackpower)


Path of The Ancestors / 2011 ∞ Valerie Magisson


Without Hope. Frida Kahlo. 1945.


Carissa Gallo

(Source: champagnepapucho, via black-culture)

"I demand unconditional love and complete freedom. That is why I am terrible."

- Tomaž Šalamun (via larmoyante)

(via analogwitness)


see now if I had a bae .. but y’all be playin
I’m ugly anyway

(via black--lamb)


Scarlett Thomas, Our Tragic Universe