HumBLOGgraphy (Eminent #4)

I decided to hop onto the “terrible pun” bandwagon, if you didn’t already notice.

I mainly leafed through various interview articles, YouTube Videos, and pop culture websites for the information I needed for my study, and found that I really only needed “research” for my intro post, and stuck more to just video watching while writing my speech and creating my learning centre. My resources are as follows!


1. Humble’s Official Website/Tumblr

This is Humble’s Tumblr blog, and official platform where he posts and keeps his followers up to date. Another place where he shares a lot of his thoughts is his Twitter, which you can find here. I only used his Tumblr a few times, mainly because of some questions he had answered that helped me, or to get links to some of his music and his book, which is only sold online.


2. BuzzFeed

I really enjoy reading BuzzFeed’s short and sweet articles anyways, so when I came across this article about Humble and Lilly’s (iiSuperwomanii) collaboration “#LEH” I knew it’d be cool to as a quick read to get a more popular and public view on one of Humble’s more well known projects. It’s a super quick read, but if you’re interested in a more in-depth interview about the project, the next website should help you out…


3. Huffington Post

This is a more detailed article about Humble and Lilly’s project “#LEH,” as it is an interview with both of them about their going about this project and the ideas behind it. It’s simple to skim, as well as interesting and entertaining to read. Again, this mainly helped me with my intro post, as I had already known about and watched #LEH for myself previous to this project, but it was a good point of view to read from, as it got personal with them on the reasons behind the music and the video.


4. Sikh Chic

This is the first of a few interviews with Humble I used to gather information, and it mainly talks about how he started off his career in music, and why he spreads his message. The comments under the blog post were also helpful, as they were thoughts from some fans and appreciators of Humble.


5. Yes Punjab

Another interview! In this short article, Humble mainly talks about being Punjabi, and how his culture ties into his poetry and music. This one has a lot of dialogue from Humble himself, and gives the reader an interesting point of view into his thoughts on how people react to his music.


6. Humble’s YouTube Channel

YouTube was my main source of information, because what better way to learn about someone than from that person them self? Humble’s channel is comprised of rant videos about society, audio videos of his music, music videos, slam poetry, #UnLearn videos (based on concepts he talks about in his book), happiness, and various other topics. He’s made many videos with Lilly Singh (iiSuperwomanii on YouTube), as well as has collaborated with other people to discuss different topics, mainly under his playlist #UnLearn. He also has links on his channel to his other social medias, and to a free download site to download his older music.


7. Last.FM

On this radio website I found a slightly extensive biography of Humble, and found it helpful for some basic facts. This would probably be a good place to start reading on if you’re interested!


8. Northwestern University Undergraduate Research

This is not so much of an interview as it is an article, but it is written by someone who has met and talked to Humble. I deemed it as fairly helpful, as well as a refreshing read and perspective of my eminent person.


9. NH7 Radio

Low and behold, the third and last interview with Humble that I came across. This was a more lengthy interview, talking about many aspects of Humble’s career and other such topics. This would be a good one to start your reading on as well!


lmao humble

Those are basically all the resources I used during the composition of my intro post, as well as during my speech writing and learning centre creation. I found – and this didn’t surprise me – that the place I mainly went to for most of this project was Humble’s YouTube channel, as I was focused more on his current thoughts and ideas, and found his weekly video updates quite helpful. I was also able to dig through his old videos and music, and found some real gems.

Mapping Out (British North) America

I really like historical maps. Especially the one that Fiona added to the resource library, where you can click on different dates to see the changes in state or country boundary lines.

Courtesy of Canadian Historical Maps
Courtesy of Canadian Historical Maps

 “After the war of 1812, immigration to British North America led to a more diversified economy, with lumbering, farming and shipbuilding growing in both the Maritimes and in the Canadas. But by the 1830s there was a great deal of unrest, partly because of economic distress, partly because of the cultural prejudice against the French-speaking Canadiens in Lower Canada, and partly due to the system of government, which gave relatively little power to the elected assembly. In November 1837, Louis-Joseph Papineau and his radical Parti Patriote led a rebellion against this unfair government structure, but the rebels were not well organized and were readily defeated by British forces. Similarly, in Upper Canada, William Lyon Mackenzie, a newspaper editor and member of the elected assembly, led a rebellion that was also quashed. But two uprisings made British officials realize they had to reform the government system.”

– Canadian Geographic: Historical Maps

I chose this map/timeline to blog about because it gives a great visual representation of what exactly is going in Canada from 1700 – 1999. We can see how our country changed from being basically two European colonies in the east to the structured provinces we have now. When viewing the Canadian geographical map/timeline, it’s amazing to see how young our country really is. Canada is still evolving and “growing up” so to speak. Our last edit to our geography was making Nunavut a territory, and happened in 1999. That’s sixteen years ago! Not long at all, compared to other places. For example, the United Kingdom’s last change in borders was in 1922, when Southern Ireland gained independence.

To me, it seems that as Europeans explored westward, they discovered all the different resources Canada had to offer. Growing, harvesting, and exporting wheat from the prairies gave Canada’s economy a boost, enabling people to explore further. When the government encouraged Canadians to explore further, offering “…free land to anyone who would clear and work it.” (Canadian Geographic: Historical Maps). In Alberta, BC, and the Yukon they  found precious minerals and oil. Remember the Klondike gold rush? Caused by the exploration of European settlers. The Aboriginals didn’t really need the gold for any reason other than decoration or ceremony – but I think they should have gotten a say in what happened (remember, it was their land) before a bunch of people bring up their pickaxes and gold pans to set up roads, supply routes, and buildings. Once the gold is gone, the deserted remains of the town make the land unsuitable for farming or animal life, so the land has to be left to be reclaimed by nature, which can take many years. Worse yet, mines that are no longer operating can still pollute the surrounding environment.

There are several differences in how Europeans mapped out this country in comparison to the indigenous people, the First Nations. The First Nations people had many different groups spread throughout Canada, with not much visual or text records of their land. Other than knowing where different language groups generally lived, most knowledge about the land was passed down through oral tradition. The whole idea of “your land” and “my land” didn’t really exist with the First Nations, which lead to problems when Europeans colonized Canada.

Map of First Nations populations and languages. Data used for this map is from 1996. Image taken from “Canada’s First Peoples” website.

The current 50 languages of Canada’s indigenous peoples belong to 11 major language families – ten First Nations and Inuktitut. Canada’s Aboriginal languages are many and diverse, and their importance to indigenous people immense. This map shows the major aboriginal language families by community in Canada for the year 1996.”

Canada’s First Peoples

My personal interests lie in First Nations rights and fairness, so it is eye-opening to see how the land originally inhabited by the First Nations people was signed away (or just outright taken, as is the case in the majority of BC) to the European settlers. “Because the Royal Proclamation of 1763 stated that the Crown must negotiate and sign treaties with the indigenous people before land could be ceded to a colony, the Numbered Treaties were negotiated in most parts of the Prairie Provinces. The Government of the Colony of British Columbia, however, failed to negotiate many treaties and as a result, most of the province’s land is not covered by treaties.” (Wikipedia, British Columbia Treaty Process). In BC, we currently have a six-step plan that First Nations groups can take to try to settle the issue of land rights.

  1. Statement of Intent to Negotiate: A First Nation submits a Statement Of Intent (SOI) stating among other things who is claiming, proof that the negotiating party is supported by the community and where the claim will be made.
  2. Readiness To Negotiate: Within 45 days of submitting the SOI the parties must sit down and show that all parties have the will and resources to negotiate a treaty.
  3. Negotiation Of a Framework Agreement: The “table of contents” of a comprehensive treaty. The three parties agree on the subjects to be negotiated and an estimated time frame for stage four agreement-in-principle negotiations.
  4. Negotiation Of An Agreement In Principle: The negotiating parties examine in detail the elements outlined in their framework agreement with the goal of solving the all problems and creating a working treaty.
  5. Negotiation to Finalize a Treaty: The treaty for all intents and purposes is finished at this stage the treaty has to be approved by all parties of the negotiating team.
  6. Implementation of the Treaty: Applying and running the First Nation as set out by the treaty.

However, I’m not entirely sure if this is fair to the First Nations peoples. For example, in July 2007, the Tsawwassen First Nation members voted in favour of their treaty. The treaty more than doubles the size of the Tsawwassen reserve, and has several financial compensations:  a one-time capital transfer of $13.9 million, $2 million for relinquishing mineral rights under English bluff, $13.5 million for startup and transition costs, $7.3 million for resource management and economic development, and $2.6 annually for ongoing programs and services. It also reserves a portion of the Fraser River salmon catch to the Tsawwassen. In return, the Tsawwassen will abandon other land claims and will eventually pay taxes. (Wikipedia, British Columbia Treaty Process)But can we really translate the First Nations way of thinking, where the people belong to the land, not the other way around, into numbers like area and money? It’s like comparing apples to oranges.

Whichever way our treaty system works, the First nations will never end up being able to fully reclaim their land, because then the other 96% of Canadians would have nowhere else to live. In fact, when negotiating, only crown-owned land is even on the table for the First Nations to regain. Any land that is owned by private companies is unavailable unless the owners are willing to sell it. Instead, it’s a very tricky process of trying to re-compensate the First Nations for something we will never be able to give back to them. It makes it worse that in the past, signing a treaty was analogous to signing away the rest of your rights as an Aboriginal, and losing rights to your culture, land, and traditions except for what was explicitly stated in the treaty. Although now treaties try to modify and define Aboriginal rights instead of “cede, release, and surrender” your rights, some people think it still limits the rights of Aboriginals even more than not having a treaty. For more information, check out:

Some of the prescribed learning outcomes this covers are:

  • Interactions between Aboriginal peoples and Europeans
  • Canada’s physiographic regions
  • Geographical factors in the development of Canada
  • Resource development in BC and Canada
  • Western Expansion
  • Technological development and settlement
  • Contributions to the development of Canada

On a brighter note, Happy 1st of March!

In-Depth Week 5: How to be Interesting

Welcome to In-Depth Week 5!

What’s new: A space junk mobile in-the-making, milk carton jellyfish (dedicated to Jeanie, of course), and… mentor contacts?

So, I’m a little behind for this post because on Saturday I was at the Zero Waste Leadership Clinic! It was a lot of fun, and I got to meet a lot of really cool people. I also hear there’s a clean energy clinic in the works, which I’m excited for because of my research project… But, back to the main subject. I got to meet the amazing Micheal Hall during this clinic, and I used some of the “How to be Interesting” tactics to make the most of the short time we had. The most important thing I took away from talking to him was that, even though this may take a lot of time, the best thing to do is to just go for it, and make stuff. One thing he said that I really connected to was falling in love with the material. He uses plastic sheets, bags and Styrofoam in his photos, and when describing how he loved the dirty, gross texture of the plastic when left out in the rain. After spending five weeks on this project, I can see what he’s talking about. The milky, translucent milk jug quickly becomes a jellyfish. The red and tan wheels from kinetic become the dusty surfaces of mars, the gaseous storms of Jupiter.  More pictures in a week or so. Promise.

A lone picture offering... I'm thinking of making this a mobile!
A lone picture offering…
I’m thinking of making this a mobile!
Courtesy of Me
Close-up on space junk surrounding Earth, courtesy of Me

Did you know that  the space junk problem we have will only get worse as time goes on? The junk currently orbiting our Earth crashes into other space junk and creates tiny, high speed fragments of debris. Contrary to what I would assume, smaller fragments still mean considerable danger to ships; even tiny flecks of paint can cause considerable erosion on the outside of spacecraft. Windshields and windows are especially susceptible to this.


Anyhow, this week’s topic of discussion is how to be interesting. Although the people I’ve been contacting about mentorship haven’t been able to find any artists to mentor me, they’ve come up with a few ideas and two mentor contacts I can pursue. We’ve been doing a lot of emailing back and forth, and while I realize that this isn’t a great replacement for talking in person, I think I’ve been able to incorporate some of the tactics Edward De Bono mentions. For instance, during my emails, I explored the idea of wearable recycled art . Port Moody is having a competition for Wearable Arts, and the awards are being given out this February.  I’m keeping my eye out for the cool ideas I’m sure will be portrayed, but I also know that the materials I have are not suited, nor high enough in number, to cover a person’s body. So I don’t think wearable art will be much help. The Zero Waste Leadership Clinic I attended on Saturday also held opportunities to share personal stories, facts and figures to further engage in the conversations we were having. As we discussed the dangers of one-use plastics, one thing that Mr. Hall said at the clinic really stuck with me: ” You could be buying a gelato, and you know those little plastic spoons that come with your ice cream? Well, you drop that on the ground when you’re done, and boom! One thousand years.” What he meant by this was that plastic took 1,000 years to naturally degrade, but the way he brought this fact into the conversation certainly made it more interesting, and more tangible. One instance in which I modified an idea to make it more acceptable to me was when emailing about mentorship. It was suggested I attend the Port Moody Wearable Art Awards, but as it is a little bit expensive, as no one else in my family would like to go, and as I most likely would not be able to talk to the artists (it is a performance and awards ceremony), I decided to check out some of the other options I had, and check back on the pictures and artists when the event was over. This way, I can still see if there are any artists whom I could talk to about mentorship, but I can devote my time and my family’s time to other priorities. In my case, I hope to finish a project around the same time the Wearable Art Awards are going on.

Which leads me to my next dilemna: I need bracelet clasps and chains. Unfortunately, these things are only tossed out when they break, which renders them unusable to me, so I’m going to have to buy them. Because the whole point of this project was to reduce waste, I really don’t want to buy anything. Right now I only need one clasp and a piece of crafting wire, so I’m going to check out Urban Source, which is a store in Vancouver that sells art materials that would have otherwise been thrown out. For example, they take film, leather scrap, cardboard, and lots of other materials that have been discarded by manufacturers. Now, their stock changes all the time, so I’m not sure if I’ll be able to find what I need. If I can’t, then I’ll have to buy things the regular way, either from the dollar store or Micheal’s. However, hopefully when I go over there I’ll be able to find what I need and snoop around about their workshop sessions – you can book instructional workshops, but seeing as it’s just me, I might just see what tips I can get from talking to the people at the store.


I’ll probably post again this week/ weekend with pictures of what I’ve been up to. See you next time on In-Depth 2015.

Annotated Biblography

This was my starting point for Angela Davis. It’s rather short, but it covers most of the events Angela Davis was well known for, such as her imprisonment. It also covers the basic facts of age, occupation, etc. The most useful part of this website, however, can be found in the bottom of the article, under Angela Davis – Elsewhere on the Web. Here, I found two links to other information about Angela Davis, and a whole bunch of books that she’d written. I’d recommend this source for a quick look at Angela Davis, but for an in-depth biography Wikipedia would be your best bet.


Mass Incarceration: The Whole Pie

This page has some of the most comprehensive information about prisoners in the US, but unfortunately it focuses on why people are being put in jail (what they’re being charged for, essentially) rather than how factors like race and gender affect incarceration. This was still a very useful page, and is very informative and eye-opening about the prison system and the definitions and caveats that make it hard to gather data about incarceration.


Incarceration is not an equal opportunity punishment

This page has some information about how race and gender affect incarceration rates; in fact, it’s a very good source compared to the rest of what the internet has to offer. However, it focuses in on males and those between 25-29 years of age, excluding the role race plays in women and in older or younger populations. It still gives a general idea of those topics, but doesn’t show any statistics or numbers. I would still recommend this as a source because the data is recent (2010) and legitimate (Taken from the US Bureau of Justice Statistics and US Census).


Breaking Down Mass Incarceration in the 2010 Census: State-by-State Incarceration Rates by Race/Ethnicity

This page is somewhat short, but offers a look at incarceration rates per state and notes some of the discrepancies in data, such as whether or not statistics include people are on parole or probation. This is a good place to look in depth at the different states, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you have a lot of time.


Incarceration in the United States

Wikipedia, as always, offers a wealth of information. However, some of the data about race, gender, age etc. is in the form of fraction and percentages that can’t be properly compared with each other; for example, there may be a percentage of blacks in prison per 100,000 US residents, and then a percentage of what proportion of all incarcerated people are white. That makes it really hard to make my own inferences and calculations. But overall, this was a good place to check facts and had one of the largest compilations of US prison information I could find.


The Meaning of Freedom: and Other Difficult Dialogues

This is one of Angela Davis’s most recent books. It discusses her views on the Prison-Industrial Complex and Abolition Democracy, as well as race, gender and sexuality in the prison system after 9/11. She ends by speaking about social change and civil engagement. I found this to be a good source to help me understand the extent of her ideas, and figure out where she was coming from. However, this is a 200 or so page book, with quite dense text. I found myself reading only the chapters I was most interested in because of time constraints. On that note, if you would rather watch a YouTube video than read a book, many of Angela Davis’s presentations and speeches are online and are definitely worth a look.


Who is Angela Davis? (The Biography of a Revolutionary)

This is a book written in 1972 by someone who knew Angela Davis. It was quite a different perspective from the book above, because it was written by a different person forty years ago. This book was really rich with stories and examples of Angela’s childhood, her high school and college years, and her early teaching career. It tells about the formation of her ideas, and how her travels and experienced affected her. For example, in Angela’s high school, the students would frequently go to protests and rallies, and the principal would make announcements about what to do if you were arrested. Again, because this is a book, you’ll need a little time to read through it. However, I found that the time passed quickly because of the engaging stories and vivid pictures portrayed throughout the book.