The aim of this book club is to educate ourselves about whose land we live on, what it means to be a Settler, and how colonization is an ongoing process. It is meant to inspire thoughtful, respectful discussion of Canadian Identity, our true history, and what reconciliation may look like.

The readings are chosen to unsettle us – they challenge our perceptions of both current culture and past history. Some of the ideas presented may be new and cause some discomfort – that’s okay, we can talk it through!

I am a Settler of British and German descent and have been living here on Treaty 7 territory for about 17 years. I am a visual artist whose media include photography, assemblage, installation and public engagement. Past public engagement activities that I have initiated include photo walking tours, art-making workshops for those with the experience of homelessness, and a Knit-in-Public day event. I have also sat on the boards of Elephant Artist Relief (EAR) and This is My City Art Society.

While I have had experience in community-building, I do not claim to be an expert on anything (except my own experience) and Settlers’ Book Club is taken in the spirit with which is intended: with open minds and hearts, and as a work in progress!

I was inspired to start this book club after reading ‘Settler: Identity and Colonialism in 21st Century Canada‘ (by Emma Battell Lowman and Adam J. Barker; it’s one of the texts on our list). I became interested in Indigenous issues several years ago and have been on the journey of self-education since then. I know that there are many other people out there on similar journeys and hope you will join me in the book club! My thanks to all those who have supported and inspired me along the way. I am grateful for what I have learned from you!

Cat Schick

Calgary (Moh’kinsstis in Blackfoot, Wichispa in Nakoda, Guts’ists’i in Tsuu T’ina)