Category Archives: Capitalism & Class

Institutional Burden Politics: A look at UBC’s disability structures

Filed under Campus, Capitalism & Class, Disability Justice & Mental Health, Race and Racism   ·   September 19th, 2015   ·   1 comment

How do UBC’s bureaucratic and institutional structures perpetuate ableist assumptions such as burden discourse? Burden discourse is when disabled bodies don’t feel entitled to ask for support. This can be due to language use, interpersonal interactions, and/or structures in the institution, which is what this article will focus on. It is critical to look closely […]

Frontlines Beat Pipelines 2: Supporting The Unist’ot’en Through Creative Resistance

Filed under Activism, Campus, Capitalism & Class, Decolonization, Events, Race and Racism   ·   September 6th, 2015   ·   0 comments

The first week of school brings more than just the familiar and notorious whirlwind of welcome back events, parties, and Imagine Day-related hysteria. It also conjures up the long legacy of on-campus colonial violence and misogyny that sometimes rears its head in traditions like Frosh. The Sauder School’s “Pocahontas chants” of 2013 readily come to […]

Beginning to Win: Amsterdam, Red Squares and the Student Struggle

Filed under Activism, Campus, Capitalism & Class, Global Politics   ·   May 4th, 2015   ·   0 comments
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“Yeah, fuck the neoliberal narrative!” These are the words that introduced us to Dutch student activist Judith Baten, one of the main organizers of the student movement, the Nieuwe Universiteit, at the University of Amsterdam. Regardless of the fact that she had been averaging 2 hours of sleep for the last week, Baten was full […]

Remembering the Purple Thistle

Filed under Activism, Capitalism & Class, Vancouver Politics   ·   April 11th, 2015   ·   0 comments

I’m chatting with Aliza Bosa in the Purple Thistle Centre. The 2,500-square foot arts and activism space in East Vancouver feels remarkably spacious with only the two of us here, but signs of the centre’s visitors and their creative endeavors linger all around us—things like screen printing tools, paints, books, computers, a bike-repair station, and […]

Homelessness is Not a Choice

Filed under Activism, Campus, Capitalism & Class, Decolonization, Feminism, Race and Racism   ·   March 30th, 2015   ·   5 comments

I am deeply indebted to the Coast Salish people, the Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh, and Musqueam nations on whose unceded lands I think, teach, learn, and write. With my heartfelt gratitude. It is springtime again and the Five Days for the Homeless Campaign has recently concluded at UBC. The campaign’s website states that student participants had to […]

10 Shitty Things about Vancouver Nightlife: A QWOC* Perspective

Filed under Capitalism & Class, Feminism, Queer Issues, Race and Racism   ·   March 18th, 2015   ·   2 comments

TW: this article contains mentions of rape, harassment and sexual assault. As a queer, black woman, moving through a straight, white world can be challenging. From everyday micro-aggressions to huge systemic structures of discrimination, our society privileges those who are very much not me. This is evident when I’m picked out in class to give […]

CUPE 2278 (TA Union): A Primer

Filed under Activism, Campus, Capitalism & Class   ·   March 10th, 2015   ·   0 comments

How we began Imagine that you are a newly hired Teaching Assistant (TA) in the computer science department at UBC. You notice that your friends who are TAs in the sociology department are getting paid much less than you are. You are constantly working overtime, yet you are not getting paid for work done beyond […]

The Net: Digital Narcissi

Filed under Capitalism & Class, Culture   ·   March 1st, 2015   ·   1 comment

I. “Listen: every morning I take a razor to the fabric of my life, I cut out a woman shape, I step into it, I go out. I perform, it works.” – Pat Lowther, “The Face” When I log onto Facebook, I type in my email address and my password. In essence, these markers are […]

Social Justice Synonyms #16: “Illegal Immigrant”


Welcome to the sixteenth segment of Social Justice Synonyms, a column at The Talon that discusses harmful and oppressive language embedded in our culture and provides ways to unlearn this language. This week’s term is illegal immigrant. This piece pulls from the work of Harsha Walia, a local South Asian activist, whose book Undoing Border […]

Why Gupta’s Casual Racism Should Worry You

Filed under Campus, Capitalism & Class, Decolonization, Global Politics, Race and Racism   ·   January 30th, 2015   ·   2 comments

Gupta has said the right things about UBC’s role in society, but his actions from the Band Aid video to his allocation of tens of millions in research funding at a time when the Board of Governors is hiking students fees and complaining about a lack of funding for the university, say far more about his plans.