Wil Sahar Patrick

Wil Sahar Patrick - PhD Candidate

I am a hwunitum/W̱ENITEM (settler) PhD Candidate in the Critical Geographies Research Lab at the University of Victoria and Joseph-Armand Bombardier Scholarship recipient on unceded Lək̓ʷəŋən and W̠SÁNEĆ Territory. I am interested in studying the cultivation, maintenance, and defence of political infrastructures towards the development of emancipatory spaces. My dissertation research explores the role of colonial monuments and infrastructures in the production of political spaces in Canada to understand how settler groups utilize monumentality in place-making, and how the challenging of settler infrastructures and implementation of Indigenous infrastructures contest settler place-holding and enact decolonization.

In addition, I examine the geography of local self-governance in the Caucasus and Central Asia, particularly Afghanistan and Tajikistan, focusing on the differing practices across space and between identity groups. Decades of conflict and distance from state-centres has created a complex landscape of political infrastructure and networks. I critique current frameworks theorizing politics in Central Asia to approach regional governance on its own terms, in solidarity with local struggles and to support the region's autonomy. I translate and organize with Afghan refugees and activists in the diaspora and in Afghanistan.

Research Interests

- The relationship between spatial dynamics and political infrastructure

- Political networks and infrastructure during local and civil conflict

- Spatial production of settler colonial subjectivities

- The co-constitution of humans and non-humans in place-making

- Local self-governance in Central Asia and the Caucasus

- Theories of geopolitics beyond state-centrism

Journal Articles

Rose-Redwood, R., Barnd, N.B., Lucchesi, A.H., Dias, S., and Patrick, W. (2020). “Decolonizing the Map: Recentering Indigenous Mappings,” Cartographica vol. 55, no. 3, pp. 151-216. Co-author.

Book Chapters

Sahar Patrick, W., Rose-Redwood, R. and Rose-Redwood, C. (2023). “Dis-Placing White Supremacy: Intersections of Black and Indigenous Struggles in the Removal of the Roosevelt Statue at the American Museum of Natural History,” in B. Carlson and T. Farrelly (eds.), The Palgrave Handbook on Rethinking Colonial Commemorations (Chapter 23) Palgrave Macmillan.


Rose-Redwood, R., N.B Barnd, A.H. Lucchesi, S. Dias, and W. Patrick eds. (2020). Special Issue on “Decolonizing the Map,” Cartographica vol. 55, no. 3. Co-editor.


Sahar Patrick, W. (2023). "David Graeber and David Wengrow, The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity, London: Allen Lane, 2021," Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies vol. 2023, no. 2.


Patrick, W. (2021). "Regional Context for the Crisis in Afghanistan." The Crisis in Afghanistan: Teaching the Conflict. Institute of Islamic Studies, University of Toronto. Online.

Patrick, W. (2019). "Critiquing the formal-informal dichotomy in local Afghan governance." Afghanistan in the World: 100 Years of Independence. SOAS, London, England.

Patrick, W. (2018). “Committing to Oblivion: The Recontextualization of Monument Avenue in Richmond, VA.” Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism Theory Session. London, Ontario.

Patrick, W. (2018). “Sustaining Toxic Worlds: Exposing the Disposable Bodies in the Life-Cycle of Lithium-Ion Batteries.” SAMLA 90 session on “Sustainable Worlds, Disposable Lives.” Birmingham, Alabama.

Patrick, W. (2018). “Follow the Blood: Red Ecology and Tracing the Bloody Relations of Oil Extraction in the Niger Delta.” De/Composing Death, DAGSE Conference session on “Colonialism & its Bloody Relations.” Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Patrick, W. (2018). “Infrastructure of Misery: Bracketing Violent Relations Inflicted by the Internet.” Matter(s) of Fact, 20th Annual Graduate Conference session on “Documenting (Un)Seen.” London, Ontario.

Panel Discussions

Barnd, N.B, Blight, S. & Patrick, W. (2021). "Unsettling Settler Space." MIT CDD Forum and DATA+Feminism Lab. Online. Panelist.

Gizabi, A. & Patrick, W. (2020). "The Hazara Story: A Brief History."  Afghan Leadership & Reconciliation Summit: Unpacking the Hazara Experience. Afghans Reviving Culture and Heritage. Online. Panelist.

Bowden, S. Matos, K. Patrick, W. Shippy, D.A., Smith, C. (2020). "Monumental Struggles." 2020 Virtual REP Conference. Online. Panelist.

Sahar, S & Patrick, W. (2020). "ARCH Deconstructs: Afghans, Racism and Discrimination Against Minorities." Afghans Reviving Culture and Heritage. Online. Panelist.


Prasad H. & Sahar Patrick, W. (2023). "Pakistan Faces Rising Separatist Insurgency in Balochistan.Newlines Institute. (January 24, 2023).

Patrick, W. & Arsalai M. (2020). "Iran's Shifting Afghan Alliances Don't Fit Easy Narratives." Foreign Policy (February 18, 2020).

Patrick, W. & Rose-Redwood R. (2020). "Why Activists are Vandalizing Statues to Colonialism." The Conversation (March 17, 2020).

Radio Interviews

Affleck, G. (2022, April, 26) The Jas Johal Show: Ryerson University changes name amid controversy over Canadian educator's legacy. What's next when renaming institutions, streets and businesses in Canada? [Radio Broadcast] Global News.