2023 Beatty Lecture: Alanis Obomsawin
For 56 years, Abenaki filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin has created documentaries that illuminate the lives and rights of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis people in Canada, becoming one of the most acclaimed Indigenous filmmakers in the world. Alanis Obomsawin will deliver the 69th Beatty Lecture at McGill University on October 16, 2023.
Using film as a medium for social justice, Obomsawin has addressed critical First Nations, Inuit, and Métis issues, including land and treaty rights and the profound and lasting impacts of the Canadian residential school system. Her extraordinary body of work includes landmark films such as Incident at Restigouche, released in 1984, about the Quebec police raids on a Mi’kmaq reserve, and Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance, released in 1993, which documents the 1990 Kanien’kéhaka (Mohawk) uprising in Kanehsatake and Oka. Obomsawin has worked at the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) as a writer, director, and producer since 1967 and released 56 documentaries that have served as powerful tools for education, advocacy, and promoting a more inclusive and equitable society. In addition to a prolific filmmaking career, Obomsawin is a celebrated singer-songwriter, visual artist, and activist.
The 2023 Beatty Lecture is co-produced by McGill’s Research and Innovation, University Advancement, and the Office of Indigenous Initiatives, the central hub for Indigenous strategies and initiatives at the University.
Nahlah Ayed, host of the CBC Radio One program Ideas, will moderate the event. A former parliamentary reporter and a veteran foreign correspondent, her work has garnered numerous awards including from the UK Foreign Press Association and the Canadian Association of Journalists. In 2012, her memoir, A Thousand Farewells, was shortlisted for a Governor General’s Literary Award. Ideas broadcasts weeknights at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT) on CBC Radio One and the CBC Listen App.
The event is open to the public. Tickets are on sale now and cost $5 for students, $10 regular. For tickets visit the Beatty Lecture website.
Media are invited to contact the Beatty organizing committee with requests.