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// Films // Colonization Road

Colonization Road

Michelle St. John / Canada / 2016 / 47 ' / English


Shane Belcourt
Michelle St. John & Brendan Brady
Host: Ryan McMahon
Executive Producers: Evan Adams & Shane Belcourt

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COLONIZATION ROAD confronts the wreckage of Canadian colonization with radical viewpoints, historical correctives and a dash of humour.


In towns throughout Ontario, there are startling reminders of the colonization of Indigenous territories and the displacement of First Nations people. Anishinaabe comedian and activist Ryan McMahon takes us to his hometown of Fort Frances and down its main drag, which is called Colonization Road. Similar streets have similar names in towns and cities across the province, direct reminders of the Public Lands Act of 1853 and its severe impact on First Nations, their treaties and their land in the name of “Canadian settlement.” On his journey through Ontario, McMahon explores the history of these roads, meets with settlers in solidarity and raises significant questions about “reconciliation” and what it means to “decolonize.”

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