You have arrived in Kespukwitk/Annapolis County. There are four places to visit, each has a separate audio piece to hear. There is a map indicating your proximity to each piece in the “View the Art” section. When you approach each location, the map will be replaced by the associated audio piece.
Find the recordings at the following locations:
Tuitnuk, “at the outflow” (newcomers called it Digby Gut) Point Prim at the end of Lighthouse Rd. Digby.
Instructions: Situate yourself just before you get to the end of the road (on the edge of the cul-de-sac), where you can look eastward, to see the tuitknuk ("Digby Gut"), while still paying attention to the 180 degrees of ocean water around you. If you decide to venture off the cul de sac, to the park surrounding the lighthouse, you can park in the parking lot. Be aware that the paths are uneven and not accessible to all.
L’sətkuk, “cutting through high rocks” (newcomers called it Bear River)
There is NO cell service in Bear River. Make sure to have the app open before you arrive and do not close it while you are there.
Behind the Legion (1877 Clementsvale Rd), by the "Democracy Park" next to the river. There is a gravel parking lot behind the legion.
Instructions: If you can, after you park your vehicle in the gravel parking area, walk on the grass toward the river. There are a few picnic benches where you can sit and watch the river slowly flow. The best time to see the flow of river is at high tide. Look downriver and upriver, watching the water and trees.
Apji’jkmujue’katik, “place of the ducks” (later named after a murderous British general). Currently home to the Annapolis Basin Conference Centre, this“Park”used to be the site of a Canadian Forces Base (CFB). You’ll find shalan’s sound piece beside the helipad/parade square on the eastern side of Marine Drive.
Instructions: If you can, park your vehicle and walk across the grass toward the edge of the shoreline, where you can see the bay of water on your east. You’ll hear the mechanical hum of the factory, here and in the recording itself. If you have them, bring your binoculars!
Nme’juaqnek, “the place of bountiful fish” (newcomers called it Annapolis Royal”) Downtown Annapolis Royal. It is on the waterfront boardwalk (which runs parallel to St. George Street), half-way between the lighthouse and the City offices.
Instructions: If possible, park your vehicle and walk past the Oqwa'titek amphitheatre onto the shoreline boardwalk. There is a wheelchair ramp closer to the police station/municipal office. Once you are just below the outdoor theatre you can gaze across the grass and the Annapolis Basin. There is also a bench on which to sit.
milui’tm: a 4-part audio series
There are four separate locations, all located in Kespukwitk (Annapolis County). Directions can be found in the “Location Info” section.
This 4-part audio series, milui'tm (i call it by different names), reflects on and celebrates the L’nu (Mi’kmaw) place names and history surrounding the Digby/Bear River/Annapolis Royal region of southwest Nova Scotia by telling alternative narratives of those places. Through a mix of poetry, music, soundscape, spoken word and conversation, artist shalan joudry seeks to not only reclaim the ancestral words, but also a consciousness of the long history of human occupation as well as different relationships to land and water. Against the backdrop of colonial changes to the landscape and memory, shalan invites us to turn to visit the location and listen.
Tuitnuk, “at the outflow” (newcomers called “Digby gut”) responds to the ocean and the idea of ‘flow’.
L’sətkuk, “cutting through high rocks,” (newcomers called “Bear River”) shares poetry about L’nu relationship to land and healing.
Apji’jkmujue’katik, “place of the ducks” (later named after a murderous British General) discusses the naming of places and reclaiming L’nu language. Nme’juaqnek, “the place of bountiful fish” (newcomers called “Port Royal/Annapolis area”) speaks of other ways to see human occupation and memory.
shalan is grateful for the many Elders who have shared the language of this landscape and the many stories it holds. She has learned many L’nu words and names through the work of Bernie Francis, and from the dedicated work of the Ta’n Weji-sqalia’tiek: Mi’kmaw Place Names Project team and others endeavouring to increase our Indigenous language and voice. She urges listeners to spend time on the online Mi’kmaw Place Names Atlas.
The transcript or descriptive text for this piece can be found by touching the "Text" button in the bottom right hand corner of your screen in the "View the Art" section.
shalan joudry is an L’nu (Mi’kmaw) narrative artist and conservation ecologist who uses 'Two-eyed Seeing' methodologies to ground mainstream ecology in L’nu cultural perspectives. As an oral storyteller, poet, podcast producer and playwright, shalan uses her theatrical background to bring Mi’kmaw and ecological stories to new listeners, as well as recounting personally crafted narratives that follow Mi’kmaw storying custom. shalan is the author of two books of poetry: Generations Re-merging, Waking Ground and the play Elapultiek, inspired by work with species-at-risk . She lives in her home territory of Kespukwitk (southwest Nova Scotia) with her family in their community of L’sətkuk (Bear River First Nation), where she is currently working on reclaiming her L'nu language.
Photo credit: Dan Froese
What is environmentalism? What do we mean when we talk about “the environment” here on unceded Mi'kmaq territory? Who defines what's included in that meaning, and what's left out?
For thousands of years, Indigenous peoples around the world have engaged in active environmental stewardship and have protected their land and water. Black communities across Turtle Island have organized against pollution and degradation of their environments for many decades. And yet, the mainstream environmental movement is still predominantly led and defined by white people, and generally fails to recognize the environmental leadership of Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC).
The Ecology Action Centre is not an exception here. EAC recognizes that Mi’kmaq and African Nova Scotian communities are still underrepresented in our work and our community partnerships, despite years of diversity and inclusion initiatives. As the largest environmental charity in Atlantic Canada, we are uniquely positioned and privileged within the climate justice movement. We have a responsibility to use that position and privilege to lift up front-line voices who have experienced first-hand environmental and social injustices for hundreds of years, and who are also often at the forefront of positive environmental change. It’s long past time to listen, share our platform, and make space for the leadership of BIPOC communities within our environmental movements. The diversity within our communities is a source of strength as we build a united movement for a just and sustainable future.
As a part of this project, and EAC’s ongoing commitment to centering BIPOC perspectives, we created exclusive BIPOC artist commissions where the artists were free to conceive and create on any topic related to environmentalism, climate, conservation, climate justice, etc. that they wanted to address. shalan joudry received one of them.