Andrea Smith on "Theorizing Native Studies"

Saturday June 21, 7:30PM

@ Red Emma's

Renowned anticolonial feminist Andrea Smith presents this important new collection on the key role of theory as a resource for contemporary indigenous politics. More from the publisher (Duke University Press):

This important collection makes a compelling argument for the importance of theory in Native studies. Within the field, there has been understandable suspicion of theory stemming both from concerns about urgent political issues needing to take precedence over theoretical speculations and from hostility toward theory as an inherently Western, imperialist epistemology. The editors ofTheorizing Native Studies take these concerns as the ground for recasting theoretical endeavors as attempts to identify the larger institutional and political structures that enable racism, inequities, and the displacement of indigenous peoples. They emphasize the need for Native people to be recognized as legitimate theorists and for the theoretical work happening outside the academy, in Native activist groups and communities, to be acknowledged. Many of the essays demonstrate how Native studies can productively engage with others seeking to dismantle and decolonize the settler state, including scholars putting theory to use in critical ethnic studies, gender and sexuality studies, and postcolonial studies. Taken together, the essays demonstrate how theory can serve as a decolonizing practice.

 

 

Andrea Smith is an associate professor of media and cultural studies at the University of California Riverside. Her publications include: Native Americans and the Christian Right: The Gendered Politics of Unlikely Alliances and Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide. She is also the editor of The Revolution Will Not Be Funded: Beyond the Nonprofit Industrial Complex, and co-editor of The Color of Violence, The Incite! Anthology. She currently serves as the U.S. Coordinator for the Ecumenical Association of Third World Theologians, and she is a co-founder of Incite! Women of Color Against Violence. She recently completed a report for the United Nations on Indigenous Peoples and Boarding Schools.

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