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PAPER – Blak Women’s Healing: Cocreating Decolonial Praxis Through Research Yarns

By June 2, 2023News Items, Published Papers

Paola Balla, Karen Jackson, Rowena Price, –  Moondani Balluk, Victoria University

Amy F. Quayle, and Christopher C. Sonn – Institute for Health and Sport, Victoria University

This article is informed by decolonial frameworks that seek to delink from ways of knowing, doing, and being that have served to oppress, racialize, and dehumanize communities. We share key insights developed through the intentional dialogues, the behind-the-scenes discussions, of our research collective in imagining and enacting the Blak women’s healing project(s) as decolonial praxis. Within the culturally safe space of our community of practice, we shared stories of our past and present, stories about oppression, marginalization, and exclusion, as well as stories of survival, resistance, and love.We sought to engage with these stories to discern and document processes central to a decolonial praxis aimed at supporting Aboriginal women through the creation of a culturally safe, affirming, and intergenerational space for yarning together in and through cultural practice. The work is an enactment of solidarity that challenges the violence of colonialism, racism, and patriarchy that erase and/or delegitimize Aboriginal women’s ways of knowing, doing, and being. These stories show the persistence of coloniality and its psychosocial effects, but also the everyday ways in which people resist, restore culture, and mobilize cultural practices for community. We suggest that these journeys of telling stories from below in counterspaces through embodied cultural practice are important strategies of decolonial resistance in the everyday and are expressions of Aboriginal sovereignty.

Balla, P., Jackson, K., Price, R., Quayle, A. F., & Sonn, C. C. (2023). Blak women’s healing: Cocreating decolonial praxis through research yarns. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 29(1), 21–30.