Title

Treaty Canoe

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date

3-2018

Source Publication

International Law's Objects, J. Hohmann and D. Joyce, eds. (forthcoming 2018, Oxford University Press)

Abstract

‘Treaty Canoe’ is an admittedly complex object to select for the present collection. As an artwork which is an assembly of made and found objects as well as a performance (in its making), its meaning is both layered and evolving. And yet, its evocation of both the promise and peril of international law in colonial North America is unmistakable. In ‘Treaty Canoe,’ ‘document, object, and location cohere to scrutinize the logics of colonialism, sovereignty and the question of responsibility that inheres in both.” As a collection of objects both art and law, tool and text, past and present, ‘Treaty Canoe’ offers both an important recognition of the violence and erasure at the foundation of the colonial project in Canada as well as an invitation to participate in a de-colonial ‘re-writing’ of these histories.

At Osgoode, ‘Treaty Canoe’ was installed on saw-horses in the glass walled front lobby of the library, where it would be encountered not only to those who entered and exited the library, but to all those passing through the central atrium of the law school. Its presence in the law building was impossible to miss; it commanded attention from passersby and generated comment and discussion among law students, faculty, staff and visitors. The juxtaposition of the various elements of the installation, the combination of familiarity and strangeness that they evoked, invited closer inspection, reflection and dialogue.

Comments

This is a draft of a chapter that has been accepted for publication by Oxford University Press in the forthcoming book International Law's Objects edited by J. Hohmann and D. Joyce due for publication in 2018. The book can be found on the Oxford site.

Available for download on Sunday, March 01, 2020

Included in

Law Commons

Share

COinS