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NEIHR Northwest Territories Network Environment
for Indigenous Health Research


Climate Denial Project

Drama as a Listening Survey and Tool for Problematizing


Our Indigenous languages are shrinking because of the changes happening around us to our environment and its resources. Most discussions around climate change are codified and contrary to our experiences and beliefs. We need to explore ways to express this disconnect and contribute to the solution. 


Using drama performance and playwriting as a medium, we will explore the issue of climate change. We will recognize the conflictual nature of interests, relations and power around the issues and learn how they affect our physical and mental well-being – in communities and as individuals. Analysis will take place, not only through discussion but through the drama itself – learning and sharing, Knowledge Translation in action. 


  • Start with a pilot funded through NEIHR; potentially partner with Northern Arts & Cultural Centre.
  • Invite participants: bring 3-4 youth to Yellowknife to participate in a working workshop to discuss the project, and their thoughts on how to actualize it. 
  • Write and perform a series of 15-minute plays where Elders and youth are invited to comment on, modify and take part. 
  • Invite people to intervene in climate change scenarios from everyday life and explore solutions. 
  • Use both English and Indigenous languages in the plays. 
  • Engage a wide and diverse audience. 
  • Work towards an exchange concept. We could also think about doing this virtually in the first year.
  • In the Spring of 2022, potentially host an in-person exchange: i.e. a performance in the bush, a performance in Toronto.

Loewenson, R., Laurell, A., Hogstedt, C., D’Ambruoso, L. and Shroff, Z. (2014). Participatory action research in health systems; a methods reader. TARSC, AHSPR, WHO, IDRC. Canada. EQUINET.