Jill Carter

Jill Carter, University of Toronto

Anthem for a Young Nation: The Re-imagination of Self, the Performative Utterance, and the Genesis of Conciliation


This paper focuses upon the endeavors, partnerships, and parallel or intersecting projects initiated by three Takaronto-based organizations with which I am involved: Talking Treaties, a multi-year, multi-disciplinary community arts project initiated and headed by Mohawk Arts Activist Ange Loft (administered through Jumblies Theatre); First Story; and the Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance. The interventions concern themselves with the shared duty of all Canadians to listen, to learn, and to speak. This work reimagines right relationships and the invitation to articulate newly acquired understandings and commitments. It envisions a way forward, which begins, quite simply, with a Speech Act—a declaration of desire to enter into an ongoing relationship with Indigenous peoples and the biotas that sustain us all and that renders the articulation of desire into an ongoing practice in quotidian life.


Jill Carter (Anishinaabe/Ashkenazi) is a theatre practitioner and Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto. Her research and praxis engage story creation (devising and dramaturgy) and performative writing. She has worked with Turtle Gals Performance Ensemble (Assistant Dramaturge and Actor), the Chocolate Woman Collective (Researcher, Assistant Director), and the Omuskego Cree Water Stories Project (Workshop Director). In Fall 2014, she directed Gloria Miguel’s Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue at Native Earth Performing Arts Centre. Recent publications include “Discarding Sympathy, Disrupting Catharis” (Theatre Journal, Fall 2015), “The Physics of the Mola” (Modern Drama, Spring 2016; Awarded Best Essay Prize by the Canadian Association for Theatre Research). She is a board member of Indigenous community performance group First Story Toronto and the Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance (IPAA).

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