Home » May 13th ENSEMBLE Activities (formerly the “Decolonization Space”)

May 13th ENSEMBLE Activities (formerly the “Decolonization Space”)

(This photo was taken in mid-2015 on the corner of Milton and de Bleury. People in the Inuit community told us that they would construct these Inuksuit and daily people would knock them down, and the community would then rebuild them once again. This photo is posted here with the gracious permission of those who built it.)



Galeries du Parc – 3590 Jeanne Mance
between Milton and Prince Arthur
Place-des-Arts Metro

Enter Les Galeries du Parc mall and the centre is to your left.

Saturday, May 13th, 2017
3:00 – 9:00

Please Note:  If you are interested in participating in activities at Solidarité Milton-Parc’s renamed ENSEMBLE Space, we ask that you read and reflect on the values-based approach to the space and why it is being created. We request that people begin to be mindful of their thoughts and actions towards others, as a collective experiment of how to have difficult and often painful dialogue about colonialism and ongoing oppression.  Please click here to read our approach.

For information on why we changed the name from the Decolonization Space to ENSEMBLE, please click here.

Saturday, May 13th Activities

3:00 – 3:30: Improv with Mariam

We want to create a safe space, nothing like play and fun to make it safe. Improv teaches us how to appreciate what people have to bring to the table, appreciate what others say and do, how to pay attention to the subtle details, how to build and co-create, how not to assume and go deeper, how to laugh at your own mistakes, how to use those mistakes to learn and build.
3:30 – 5:30: Active Listening Workshop with Viv and Reiko
Join Reiko and Viv for a workshop on non-judgemental active listening. The 2-hour session will include basic tips, demonstrations and one-on-one practice. The workshop will focus on how to supportively listen to peers in activist spaces and offers an opportunity for participants to strengthen their listening skills. Reiko has been the Coordinator of the ECOLE Project for the past year and has extensive experience in active listening through peer support programs. Viv has been a Facilitator at the ECOLE Project for 2 years. Bilingual facilitation is possible, please let us know in advance. Si vous préférez le Français, laissez-nous le savoir.

5:30 Mealsharing Potluck

Bring your leftovers, make something for the Mealshare or bring snacks to share throughout the time we spend together. Or just come and share yourself!

French with English subtitles

6:30 – 8:45: A Presentation of  Jean Rouch’s La Pyramide Humaine at ENSEMBLE by James Oscar
(French with English subtitles)

Jean Rouch’s classic documentary “The Human Pyramid” follows the lives of a group of African and European students and their inter-relationships in their Ivory Coast university, during their 1960 school year. The key questions asked – “How can we as African and Europeans – really and truly find a way to coexist?” “How can we have free and open discussions about what really is on our minds!” Human Pyramid holds no punches, with unedited and frank discussions about racism, colonialism, revolution, love, dreams, loss, privilege, and the urgencies of their era.

The film matches poetic tones and gorgeous cinematography with diatribe and open discussions of the topics that foretell our current need to have honest and respectful talk about our our senses of belonging or not belonging, our country’s pasts, presents, exclusions, privilege, racism, identity, all that we have inherited, and the need to create a real “vivre ensemble” “living together ” – one where we are not scared to say what we have to say.

The Human Pyramid mixes documentary and fiction. There are real and created roles – some people in the film portray themselves, and others construct roles to either heighten or lighten the drama. The unexpected results are very real dialogues that are light, raw, confrontational, funny, bitter, poetic and brute discussions of the students’ contemporary social realities. One of the films’s unexpected bonuses is looking at poetry’s power as a possible nuanced way to better inform our complex times.

The Human Pyramid also asks: What are the”safe distances” we construct between each other. Are these “safe” distances just safety mechanisms? Could they possibly be mechanisms that ultimately have the end result of keeping us apart? How can we go beyond these “safe” spaces that we construct and begin to actually dialogue and talk about our fears, our vulnerabilities, our hates, our loves. The film is a gorgeous ride through the very early days of the revolutionary 1960s.

James Oscar studied closely under the Martiniquan poet Edouard Glissant.

James Oscar’s presentation of Jean Rouch’s Pyramide Humaine at ENSEMBLE is being presented as part of a research unit he initiated to work with ENSEMBLE. That research unit is called On the History of Natural Disappearances (Research Unit).

8:45 Space Closing and Cleanup


Connect with Su at su@solidaritemiltonparc.ca for more information.

Milton-Parc is located on Haudenosaunee traditional territory.

Name of author

Name: solidaritemiltonparc

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