YEG: A Living History

YEG: A Living History

A live, interactive installation on the history of Edmonton’s race relations


Initiative Background

Drama students from Jasper High School presented a live, interactive installation that explored Edmonton’s race relations, both past and present.

On May 8th, 2018, we heard from students who had spent the past months experiencing a series of workshops that utilized drama to explore a historical timeline of race relations in Edmonton. The workshops included lessons and discussions on various topics such as:

  • Truth and Reconciliation
  • Challenging the narrative of Canada
  • Colonization
  • Race and racism
  • How to gather and share stories from our communities.

The workshops also included guest speakers from ethnocultural and Indigenous community members. The students developed vignettes for a final public performance. Michelle Kennedy facilitated the workshops alongside drama teacher Edith Mitchell.

The Centre for Race and Culture undertook a similar project the previous year (2017) – the Canada150 project with Lillian Osborne High School students. The Canada150 project covered the topics of:

  • Canada’s lesser-known history stories
  • Exploring racism embedded in Canada’s policies and founding as a country
  • Acknowledging the ongoing impacts of racial discrimination on Indigenous and racialized communities

The success of the Canada150 project encouraged us to repeat this project with another school. The work with the students at Jasper Place High School was thoughtful and vulnerable, with the students identifying hope as their primary goal for their work.

Initiative Funders

This initiative was supported by Edmonton Heritage Council.