aboriginal cultures

World Indigenous Peoples Day 2017

August will be here soon! On August 9th, we’ll be celebrating World Indigenous Peoples Day!

On that day, The Aila Test would love to feature all indigenous / aboriginal people from around the world.

If you are indigenous, submit to us or tag us in selfies, photographs, artwork, poetry, short films, any media project, or any news/events that you’d like us to shine a light on and bring more attention to!

National Aboriginal Day was such a great success and it was really beautiful and healing to see so many Indigenous people. It would be wonderful to see it again. There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to celebrate ourselves, our culture, our history, and the things we’ve shared with each other and the world.

Please spread the word!


Aboriginal man with scarification.

The text reads:
“This race is rapidly dying off. The few natives left adopt the customs of the white people”.

Aboriginals in Australia were forced to adopt these “customs’, or be killed.
The prefix of “King” given to the man in this photo is simply an irrelevant projection of colonialism, as there were no such positions in Aboriginal society.
More likely is that he was instead a well respected chief or elder.

As we all know, October is drawing near and the next big event will be on October 9th, which unfortunately is still “Columbus Day” in several parts of the US.

Since October 9th will be an especially difficult time for a lot of Natives, I say we should go all out. Post selfies, post artwork or poems or things you’ve created, submit or send asks about your favorite Indigenous films, actors, activists, historical figures, or anything that gives you a sense of pride and inspiration.

If you would like The Aila Test to add links to articles/documentaries/other sources that detail the horrors of Christopher Columbus, let us know. We will set up a tag if you’d like to blacklist it, but I think it would be helpful and healing for everybody if we made this day more about us, our accomplishments, our creation, our pride, and our personal growth and happiness.

If Tumblr is going to be your place to escape on that day, it might help if your feed is full of beautiful Indigenous people.

Let me know if you have any suggestions on how to make these days special or if you have any questions.

See you then!

Hello Tumblr!

Recently I’ve been listening to some great podcasts and to my surprise, there are a lot of First Nations related ones! This is so inspiring to me, as I myself have a radio show on my Reserve and I think these are great topics to mention. Also one day, when I get my own website/blog up and running, I hope to make my own podcasts too! If you’re interested in listening to some that are Native-related, here are 7 that I recommend.

1. CBC’s New Fire by Lisa Charleyboy

Lisa is a blogger and social media trailblazer for young Native women. Also known as Urban Native Girl, Lisa talks about a wide variety of issues Natives face in a urban, modern day society. This is also a CBC Radio podcast so it’s great quality.

2. CBC’s Unreserved by Rosanna Deerchild

Unreserved touches on history, current issues and reconciliation in her CBC podcasts. She also celebrates successful and inspiring First Nations authors, educators,  athletes, and musicians.  

3. Kanata Pod by Indian & Cowboy

Kanata Pod is a new series that features activists and creators focused on the next 150 years of Canada. They also talk about Native representation in the community and in major media

4. Stories From the Land

Stories from the land is a wide collection of stories from different individuals from different First Nations communities across Canada. With these stories, they aim to connect all tribes with teachings and philosophy 

5. Red Man Laughing by Ryan McMahon 

Ryan McMahon shows the importance of Native humour in his podcasts. It’s something we Natives can all connect with and learn from. While being humorous, Ryan also tackles important issues such as reconciliation, youth, and families.

6. Media Indigena by Rick Harp

Media Indigena is a weekly program where a roundtable of Indigenous people talk about current issues in society. They talk about huge issues the mainstream media is too afraid to talk about and they keep it very current.

7. Missing and Murdered: Who Killed Alberta Williams?

Also a CBC podcast, this podcast is important as it goes in depth into one of the cases of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women in Canada. It shows first hand of the ignorance and tragedy towards the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women cases. In this case, Alberta Williams was found dead along the “Highway of tears” (A highway in BC where many, many other Indigenous women were found murdered) in 1989 and they’ve never found her killer. Nearly thirty years later, the family and a retired cop find new evidence into solving this heartbreaking case.

There you have it, that’s what I’ve been listening to lately! I haven’t listened to every single episode yet but that’s what I’ll be doing for the next week or two lol. If you’ve listened to these as well let me know what you think! Also if you have any suggestions let me know :)

Bye for now!



Just something to keep in mind before you get on your little soap box about how ‘blending cultures will end racism!’ or whatever nonsense you want to use to speak over actual PoC so you can wear bindis or warbonnets or wear blackface.

Unless they welcome you into their culture, you are NOT welcomed into that culture. You don’t get to go into someone else’s home and start calling the shots.

anonymous asked:

As a feminist anthropologist, how to you approach the cultures of Aboriginal Australians? They are a people who have faced enormous injustice at the hands of colonists, yet are also historically one of the most patriarchal peoples on earth. I mean, their treatment of women was shocking even to Victorian-era Englishmen. I'm reading about them, and finding it hard to unpack all of this. How does one approach a culture that is a victim of injustice but also is traditionally the opposit of feminist?

I always love the whole ‘the colonizers are appalled by the way the colonized treat their women’ because like dudes look in the god damn mirror. There’s also a book called Orientalism, I recommend it, though it does apply to the Middle East. 

As a White person, I cannot with any conscience be like ‘Aboriginal Australians don’t have a matriarchy so FUCK EM’. Post-colonial / feminist scholars are going to be your best bet. My favorite feminist anthropologist is Abu-Lughod, I’d recommend reading “Do Muslim Women Really Need Saving?” to get a whiff of the tug and pull between racism and feminism. 

In the kumbaya anthropology, all cultures all equal and yadda yadda but imo, and the opinions of others, all cultures are also open to feminist, post-colonial, and queer critique. Post-colonial scholars will be passionate about pointing to the horrific injustice faced by Aboriginal Australians. Feminist anthropologists will evaluate gender roles and expectations in their society. Calling out other cultures does sometimes make me uncomfortable (see my ask about female genital mutilation) - but I do love when anthropologists of that culture call it out themselves, rather than the Global North anthropologists putting on their white savior suits. 


Ive seen a lot of people make art and talk about the Wendigo creature, so I thought I would make a brief post about the history behind it for anyone who’s interested….

The Wendigo, Is a monster or evil spirit that comes from Algonquin tribe and is native to the northern forests of the Atlantic coast and Great Lakes Region of both the U.S and Canada. The wendigo may appear as a monster with some characteristics of a human, or as a spirit who has possessed a human being and made them become monstrous. It is historically associated with cannibalism murder, insatiable greed, and the cultural taboos against such behaviours.

So when you say things like “Native Americans have a responsibility to teach [non Natives] their myths and legends and culture!!!” so you can shift the responsibility of being racist on the people you’re targeting, this is what you’re really saying:

In order for you to “understand why we’re so upset with you,” we are expected to talk about, in detail, every single aspect of our struggle for survival, again.

We are expected to talk about ethnic cleansing, genocide, war, colonialism, sexual violence, residential schools, forced assimilation,  the kidnapping of our children, skyrocketing suicide rates, cultural appropriation, racist stereotypes, our women going missing and being found murdered, again.

We are expected to talk about our personal experiences with racism from our partners, our friends, our friends’ family members, our teachers, our employers, our co-workers, acquaintances, online communities, fandoms, entire industries, pop culture icons, government officials, and even the lateral violence within our own communities, again.

We are expected to spell out, in detail, as to what our family members of the previous generation survived in order for us to be here, again.

We are expected to relive our trauma, again.

With all of the information already available for you on the internet that’s a mere Google search away, you expect us to start from square one all over again with no regard for the toll it takes on our hearts, just so you can ignore it AGAIN.

Excuse me, but fuck you.

National Aboriginal Day is coming up soon (June 21) and I can’t wait to see all of you on here! Here are some suggestions for what you can post on this day:

1. Selfies / Photographs of yourself, whether it’s casual or in regalia or something else (sports uniform, cosplay, graduation cap and gown, etc)

2. Photographs of family events, ceremonies, powwows, celebrations, etc.

3. Video of powwows, celebrations, etc.

4. Photosets/gifsets about your favorite Indigenous / Aboriginal actors, writers, poets, artists, etc.

5. Poems, essays, songs, stories, or personal accounts about being Indigenous / Aboriginal

6. Art, drawings, paintings, mood boards, photomanipulation, any kind of visual media that inspires you. 

And more! This is a means of celebrating who we are and where we come from.

And of course, this means ALL Indigenous and Aboriginal people. We are all in this together. Let’s show them what we’re made of!