Our Land Acknowledgment

Every community owes its existence and vitality to generations from around the world who contributed their hopes, dreams, and energy to making the history that led to this moment. Some were brought here against their will, some were drawn to leave their distant homes in hope of a better life, and some have lived on this land for more generations than can be counted. Truth and acknowledgment are critical to building mutual respect and connection across all barriers of heritage and difference. We begin this effort to acknowledge what has been buried by honoring the truth. We are standing on the ancestral lands of both the Daḳota and Ojibwe People. Minnesota comes from the Daḳota name for this region, Mni Sota Maḳoce — “the land where the waters reflect the skies.” We pay respects to their elders past and present. Please take a moment to consider the many legacies of violence, displacement, migration, and settlement that bring us together here today. And please join us in uncovering such truths at any and all public events.

Context & Accountability

Context

A Land Acknowledgment is a formal recognition of the unique and enduring relationship that exists between American Indians and their territories. This acknowledgment is an opportunity for the entire AIGA Minnesota community to increase our awareness of the history of the land on which we reside. It is important for each of us to understand the long-standing history that has brought us to reside on the land and to seek to understand our place within that history.

Our land acknowledgment was intentionally crafted with resources from Honor Native Land, U of M’s Land Acknowledgment, and UMD’s Land Acknowledgment.

Accountability

A Land Acknowledgment is not something you “just do.” Rather, it is a reflection process in which you build mindfulness and intention walking into a gathering. It should be rooted in whose land you are honored to stand on and should guide how you move forward in both conversations and actions. Acknowledging the land is an important first step in an ongoing process to learn, build relationships with American Indian nations and peoples, and act “by being accountable towards Native people, communities, and nations by supporting what they say, aligning oneself with the struggle, and speaking up when something problematic is said or done.”

Pronunciations & Resources