Unsettling Eurocentric Frameworks of Homebuilding: What Happens When Indigenous Hospitality Is No Longer Hospitable?

Authors: Shelby Loft*, The University of British Columbia
Topics: Indigenous Peoples, Cultural Geography, Social Geography
Keywords: Homebuilding, Land, Body, Indigenous, Felt Violence, Colonization, Hospitality
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/7/2020
Start / End Time: 8:40 AM / 9:55 AM
Room: Granite B, Hyatt Regency, Third Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


This paper works to begin to address what it means to embody home from a Kanyenke’ha:ka perspective. Eurocentric frameworks of homebuilding obfuscate how felt violence can occur on both Indigenous bodies and lands. In the first section, this paper draws on legal and health geographies to demonstrate how colonization has and continues to construct land- and the body-as-property. Then, I draw on the concept of ‘highest and best use’ value associated with land/the body to illustrate the stark contrast between how colonial constructs of homebuilding and eternal settlement contribute to Indigenous peoples’ felt violence. Afterwards, I address the implications of how Indigenous peoples’ felt violence continues to be ignored and erased to ultimately pose the question, ‘what happens when Indigenous hospitality is no longer hospitable?’ Here, I argue to disrupt the comfortability of homebuilding and assert that Indigenous land and bodies are not eternal entities and therefore, neither should settler’s settlement. In order for Indigenous hospitality to remain, I argue that land needs to be accepted as land and the body as a fleshy, emotional, and impressionable being—not simply theoretical and temporal entities that can be abstracted and altered to fit colonization’s geographical imaginary.

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