B(lockade) Free University: What is the ‘Australian Border’?


What? Public lecture & community discussion

When? 6pm – 7.30pm, Tuesday 14th July

Where? On the grassy oval at Raymond Park, near the Pineapple Hotel.

We will also livestream the event via the Brisbane Free University facebook page.

This discussion will take place on the unceded lands of the Yuggera and Turrbal people. We acknowledge their Elders past and present, and the powerful lineage of political organising and theorising that continues to this day. Sovereignty over these lands has never been ceded.

Who? All welcome! Completely free.

Those watching on the livestream are also encouraged to send in their questions and discussion points. We will have an organiser watching the page throughout and sharing comments with the speakers and participants in the park.

Children are welcome to come to this event, and their participation is encouraged! There will also be dedicated child minding by an experienced childcare worker. Please message Brisbane Free University on facebook, or email brisbanefreeuniversity at gmail dot com if you would like child minding support, so we have an idea about numbers.

Dr. Sarah Keenan
Sarah Keenan works at Birkbeck Law School, University of London, where she co-directs the Centre for Research on Race and Law. Her research and teaching are at the intersection of legal and political theory, geography and post-colonial studies. Her monograph Subversive Property: Law and the Production of Spaces of Belonging was published in the Routledge Social Justice series in 2015.

Boe Spearim
Boe Spearim is a Kooma, Murawarii and Gamilaraay community organizer, born in western Sydney and raised on the Southside of Brisbane.

Boe has been involved in community radio since 2012 volunteering at 4zzz on the Indigi Briz program then later studying and completing a cert 3 in media broadcasting at 98.9fm where Boe found employment after leaving the station and then coming back in 2017 Boe began hosting Let’s Talk a talkback program that discusses issues that affect First Nations people. This year Boe started and created a podcast called Frontier War Stories each episode Boe will speak with different Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people about research, books and oral histories which document the first 140 years of conflict and resistance. These times are the Frontier Wars and these are our War Stories.

Before finding his passion in radio Boe got involved in activism at the Brisbane Aboriginal Sovereign Embassy which was established in March 2012 in Musgrave Park.

Philip Marrii
Philip Marrii is a Ngarabul and Wirrayaraay Murri from the so called New England region. Philip is a writer, historian and campaigner, and is passionate about language and cultural revival, protecting country by any means necessary and putting Aboriginal land in Aboriginal hands.

The discussion will be facilitated by Jonathan Sri and Liz Strakosch. Jonno is a Meanjin-based writer, poet, musician, community organiser and the current city councillor for the Gabba Ward. Liz is a political theorist, academic, community organiser and writer.

The space!
In solidarity with the protests of the people incarcerated by the Immigration Department in the Kangaroo Point Hotel, and alongside the work of Refugee Solidarity Meanjin in blockading the compound to prevent any of the men being forcibly removed, Brisbane Free University is temporarily reconfiguring as a Blockade Free University, to co-host a series of panel discussions and public conversations about the politics of representation, racial violence, borders and prisons, and other colonial strategies of racial control, surveillance and governance.

This event!
Following on from our last lecture on the ethics and politics of representation in art and activism, this week we’re grappling with law and power. How does law create carceral systems like borders and prisons? What is the Australian border? How is it produced and reproduced through legal, social, political and cultural processes?

The discussion will go for around an hour, but we encourage everyone to head over to the Blockade afterwards and continue the community reflections.

We will abide by COVID-19 social distancing restrictions. As of last Friday, restrictions have lifted to enable groups up to 100 people to gather in public spaces. This venue is outdoors, and it is relatively easy to distance socially. Please bring hand sanitiser, and we recommend wearing masks. If you cannot attend due to your health, please watch via the live stream and post your questions and comments in the thread.

The venue is a park.
There is an all-access bathroom with a changing table.
We will try to provide some comfortable seating from the Blockade, but if you can bring your own chair, that would be ideal.
Children are welcome to come to this event, and their participation is encouraged! There will also be dedicated child minding by an experienced childcare worker. Please message the page if you would like child minding support so we have an idea about numbers!
We will not have an AUSLAN interpreter available.
We can provide transcripts from the event on request.

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