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3 November 2022


November 3 | 13:30-15:00 | Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

As part of the TAKING CARE conference on Thursday afternoon, four parallel break-out sessions take place. Please sign-up for one of the sessions during registration.


Critical Care Package (a creative worshop)

Picking up on the themes discussed in Audra Mitchell's presentation, this workshop will address the task of helping the bat/uma-t-simagere (and other beings currently held in museums) to return home to their communities. Specifically, we will work together to create a critical 'care package' to assist the bat in their homeward journey.

This workshop may include writing, drawings, maps, apologies, advice for avoiding harms, lists of provisions, ideas, wishes and promises. Although this work will be guided by support and hope for the bat's return, we will not lose focus on the various ways in which we are implicated in the structures of violence that have brought us and the bat into relation, and how they show up in our attempts to make amends. The care package will be shared with museum staff to help support their work around these issues. 

Furthermore, it will be rooted in principles of anti-racism, anti-colonialism, anti-ableism, queer/2SLGBTQIA+ and feminist principles. It may include discussion of traumatic events, so please take care and also give others a warning/the option to leave if you wish to discuss something that may be (re-)traumatizing to you or others. You are welcome to leave (and/or return) at any time if things become too much. The workshop will involve speaking, but also other modes of participation, including but not limited to, listening, writing, drawing, movement and other forms of expression. Everyone will be able to contribute something to the care package in a way that is accessible and meaningful to them. Please let the organizers know if you have accessibility needs. 

Audra Mitchell (she/her, they/them) is Professor and Canada Research Chair in Global Political Ecology at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada. Mitchell’s work addresses multi-scale eco-political violence. It focuses on the knowledge and perspectives of marginalized communities. Mitchell’s work also challenges narratives of "the" future, striving towards possible futures in which plural communities can thrive.   Mitchell’s forthcoming book, (Bio)plurality: Global Extinction and Indigenous Resistance, reframes extinction as an expression of intersecting forms of global violence, offering alternative modes of response rooted in the embrace of irreducible difference. Their newest research program explores how the norm of neurotypicality contributes to global ecological violence, and explores the contributions that Autistic and other neurodivergent ecologies can make to ecological futuring. As an Autistic and Dyspraxic scholar, Mitchell is committed to making spaces in the academy for disabled and multiply-marginalized scholars. 

Audra Mitchell

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