Re-Thinking Activism: A Conversation & Arts/Crafts Workshop with christina lee

When you hear the word “activism”, what do you think of? In the past two terms, the 2023/24 ACAM Dialogues cohort have been thinking about what activism is and what it could be. As students, we often find that “activism” is a word people hear and immediately distance themselves from—believing that what they do is not activism work or that only certain people become “activists”.

At this student-oriented event, we hope to provide students an opportunity to discuss and find ways of understanding activism in a more nuanced way. We believe that people contribute so much good into the world—in ways that are often varied, unseen, or unexpected. 

We ask: What is activism and what are the different forms or scales that it takes? When we engage in community-work and community-building as a job, what ends up being considered as activism? How do we navigate the blurred line between employment and activist work? Furthermore, how do we continue doing “activism” work in a sustainable, approachable and forgiving fashion — one that also takes care of the activist too? Ultimately, this event seeks to encourage participants to reflect upon the breadth and possibilities of activism, to imagine new ways of being and engaging in this world, and to remind them that even the smallest of conversations or actions can make a big difference

To explore the nuances of activism, we invite christina lee—director of Community Capacity and Strategic Initiatives at hua foundation and adjunct professor with UBC ACAM—to share their thoughts and experiences. Recounting experiences navigating the activist-sector, as well as moments that fueled their passion for community organising, we hope to dive deeper into their work and practice. As many of us consider opportunities outside of the academic sphere, we’d love to learn more about how they were able to incorporate the skills they honed in university with community-building and community-centred work. 

Afterwards, participants will have an opportunity to reflect on the topics discussed in an arts/crafts format. This part of the event will be a time of conversation and creative reflection. All art supplies will be provided, as well as prompts to encourage a re-thinking, re-framing, and re-imagining of what activism is and could be.

As with any ACAM event, light snacks and drinks are provided. If you have any dietary restrictions or requirements, please let us know by using the RSVP form below.

This event is free and open to all. While this is a continuation of the ACAM Dialogues: Building Anti-Racism on Campus (2023/4). We invite all students, staff, faculty, and community members to attend, while being mindful of what it means to engage in a space of respectful and conscientious dialogue that centres the experiences of students of colour, particularly those who broadly identify with the Asian diaspora.

We would like to acknowledge that this event will take place on the traditional, unceded, ancestral homelands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), and Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) First Nations.  We would also like to thank the Aoki Fund Endowment for making this event possible.

RSVP is closed for this event.