This video depicts an activity designed by Theresa Benedict, a graduate from Indigenous Studies at Trent University. The exercise involves two stages. First, the group divides into a small group of Indigenous people and another small group of non-Indigenous people to brainstorm each group’s perceptions of what they bring into a relationship – the “baggage” that they carry. The two groups then come together to compare the baggage they are bringing into a relationship.
This exercise is an excellent way to explore the differences between Indigenous and non-Indigenous perspectives on reconciliation and discuss how and whether those differences can be overcome.
PLEASE NOTE: Themes and topics discussed in this exercise may be upsetting for some people. Viewer and participation discretion is advised.
This video was taken on November 9th, 2018 at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario. The activity was undertaken by a group of Trent students; however, the exercise is designed for any group to provide insights into the nature of tensions in reconciliation.
The original class in which the “Baggage” exercise was developed included Theresa Benedict, Hilary Hodgins, Juliana LeSage, Robin Linn, Lauren MacLachlan, Taylor McDonald, Beverley Morgan, Victor Parker, Rashawn Pershad, Scott Somerville, and seven other Trent students enrolled in the Alliances course (INDG 4050) in 2017.
The first part of the video shows the exercise. The second part contains excerpts from three interviews: Theresa Benedict (Activity Designer), Robin Linn (participant), and Julianna LeSage (participant).
PLEASE NOTE: The audio quality changes in this video when the speaker is not wearing a lapel microphone.