Global Apartheid Conference: Callout for Workshops
Every year, the Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG) organizes a weekend of workshopsabout environmental and social justice issues, providing activists the opportunity for skills development and cooperative learning. This year, OPIRG Carleton and OPIRG-Ottawa/GRIPO-Ottawa have teamed up to organize a conference focusing on Global Apartheid: the system of global inequality that dictates access to wealth, power and basic human rights based on race and place*.
Apartheid, an institutionalized system of racial subjugation which means ‘separateness' in Afrikaans, did not end when South African apartheid formally ended in 1994, but continues to manifest itself today in many local and global contexts: Indigenous struggles for justice from Turtle Island to Palestine; Canada's system of unfree migrant labour; struggles against colonial borders and racist citizenship regimes around the world; and racialized economic apartheid, to name but a few examples.
We are currently soliciting workshops for the conference from community organizers and activists. The Global Apartheid conference will take place on January 22 and 23, 2010 in Ottawa, Ontario, and the workshop component will take place from approximately 11 am to 4 pm on Saturday January 23rd, in 1.5 hour blocks. Workshops which discuss how the concept of 'global apartheid' pertains to your particular movement are encouraged. Workshops are an important way to offer conference attendees the ability to tune into the issues, movements, groups, and ideas that most invigorate them, as well as making all of us aware of the thread that ties our struggles together, and closing in on the solution of cutting the cord, so to speak.
Suggested workshop topics could include: no borders organizing; anti-Olympics organizing; the anti-Israeli apartheid movement; Canada's economic apartheid; Indigenous solidarity; gendering the apartheid analysis; anti-G8/G20 organizing from an anti-colonial perspective; opposing the national security agenda; queer struggles against apartheid; and opposing the prison industrial complex, to name a few.
We would like to encourage a level of critical analysis that can still be fun and interactive. We are open to a variety of formats, keeping in mind that we are committed to an anti-oppressive and accessible forum for all participants (i.e. workshops should be interactive / participatory for all participants). Workshop facilitators should expect between 10-20 people per workshop. If you want to cap the number of participants attending your workshop, please let us know.
Workshop proposals must be typed, and include the following:
- The title of your workshop
- A summary of the goals/focus of the workshop
- A detailed outline of your workshop
- Any props, equipment or space requirements you might need
- A short (2-3 sentences) biography of the individual or group presenting the workshop
- Subject matter that may trigger painful experiences of participants
We are also open to creating a panel session made up of shorter 20-minute presentations by organizers or groups, if you do not wish to organize a full 1.5 hour workshop.
While OPIRG is a student-funded social justice organization with a limited budget, we will do our best to subsidize travel costs and provide honoraria to all presenters. If you require travel assistance or an honorarium, please include that in your workshop proposal.
**Please forward workshop submissions to: [email protected]
The extended deadline for submitting workshop proposals is Friday January 15th, 2010.
Any questions? Email [email protected] or call (613) 520 2757.
In solidarity and thanks,
The Global Apartheid Conference Organizers
*For the formal definition of the crime of apartheid in international law, visit the UN page here (pdf file)