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Northern Crises: Women’s Relationship and Resistances to Resource Extractions

Deborah Stienstra

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Using feminist disability studies and intersectionality, this article examines the ongoing resource extractions in Labrador and examines local communities and relationships as one way to understand gender and global social, economic and environmental crises.

The article explores how crises in Labrador have been constituted and maintained around global agendas of economic and resource development, historical and current colonial practices and limited and constrained international relations with local Indigenous Nations. The lives of women and their communities in Labrador illustrate one wave of a global crisis that extinguishes diversity and connection to the land in a race to extract natural resources, maintain global military power and gain profit in the global economy. The actions over the past thirty years by NATO and the Canadian federal, provincial and municipal governments, coupled with transnational mining corporations such as Vale, have “normalized” crisis in the communities and reduced the capacity of these communities and Indigenous Nations to respond to the issues arising as a result of the local development project. Yet the women and their communities illustrate their agency and reject an analysis of them exclusively as victims. Together with researchers and activists, the women in Labrador have built a community of practice throughout the Feminist Northern Network project.

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