Coll Thrush, professor of History at the University of British Columbia and a 1991 WWU alumnus (Fairhaven) will present “Rethinking the Heart of Empire: Indigenous Travellers in London, 1502-2015” at noon on Wednesday, Nov. 29 in the Fairhaven auditorium as part of the Fairhaven World Issues Forum speaker series, which is free and open to the public.
London is famed both as the ancient center of a former empire and as a modern metropolis of bewildering complexity and diversity. Coll Thrush offers an imaginative vision of the city's past crafted from an almost entirely new perspective: that of Indigenous children, women, and men who traveled there, willingly or otherwise, from territories that became Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and the United States, beginning in the sixteenth century. They included captives and diplomats, missionaries and shamans, poets and performers. Thrush illustrates how London learned to be a global, imperial city and how Indigenous people were central to that process.
Coll Thrush is professor of history at the University of British Columbia, where he is also affiliated with UBC’s Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies. He is the author of Indigenous London and Native Seattle: Histories from the Crossing-Over Place.