Tsatia Adzich

Researcher explores settler colonial urbanisms

December 22, 2021

Geography PhD student Tsatia Adzich, a Cree-Métis from Tri-River Métis Community in northern B.C., received the Indigenous Graduate Entrance Scholarship in 2020.

Adzich earned her BA (Hons) from SFU’s Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology in 2016, and was the first Indigenous person to be selected as the faculty’s convocation speaker. She also holds two master’s degrees.

She is continuing work she started during one of her master’s degrees to encourage urban Indigenous communities in Metro Vancouver and in the northeastern Russian city of Yakutsk to discuss strategies and experiences of Indigenous community- building, governance, international Indigenous relations, and transnational futures.

Using Cree-Métis legal principles and teachings of wahkohtowin (kinship, or the practice of being in good relation), and coastal methodologies of witnessing, her research explores urban Indigenous peoples’ valuable contributions to understandings and expansions of Indigenous self- determination, both as concept and practice.

Adzich critically investigates how Indigenous women in Canada and Russia build urban spaces of co-resistance and liberation, and analyzes the cultural and geopolitical contributions these relationships make to global understandings of Indigenous self-determination.

“My research connects to Indigenous people in many aspects,” says Adzich. “I approach this research as ceremony, as an honouring of the multitudes contained by my community and the resurgent power we hold to re-imagine and enact Indigenous futurities in the spaces we create together.”

Adzich also received the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council to fund her PhD research.