Teaching as Trespass: Avoiding Places of Innocence

Daniela Bascuñán, Shawna Carroll, Mark Sinke, Jean Paul Restoule

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Teachers in Canadian public school contexts are attempting to teach about Indigenous knowledges and epistemologies. Given the present state of asymmetrical Indigenous-settler relations, the complexity of this work requires a large breadth of consideration. Our study provides insight into the nuances of teaching Indigenous perspectives and worldviews, and the barriers and motivations for its inclusion in elementary and secondary classrooms. We conceptualize that teachers are “always-already” trespassing on Indigenous Lands and illuminate the enactment of “trespass” by settler teachers as they move their settler teacher identities to a place of “innocence.” Teachers enacted trespass through acts of return, absorption, erasure, and the eliding of settler experiences. We offer important starting points for continued introspection about the roles and responsibilities of teachers working within settler-colonial education structures and ensuing complicity in the historic marginalization of Others. We highlight the possibilities of a curriculum that is treaty-based and enacted with Indigenous collaboration and consultation.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEquity and Excellence in Education
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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