What Can Indigenous Feminist Knowledge and Practices Bring to “Indigenizing” the Academy?

Journal of World Philosophies 4 (1):121-155 (2019)
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Abstract

More than a decade has passed since North American Indigenous scholars began a public dialogue on how we might “Indigenize the academy.” Discussions around how to “Indigenize” and whether it’s possible to “decolonize” the academy in Canada have proliferated as a result of the Truth and Reconciliation of Canada, which calls upon Canadians to learn the truth about colonial relations and reconcile the damage that is ongoing. Indigenous scholars are increasingly leading and writing about efforts in their institutions; efforts include land- and Indigenous language-based pedagogies, transformative community-based research, Indigenous theorizing, and dual governance structures. Kim Anderson’s paper invites dialogue about how Indigenous feminist approaches can spark unique Indigenizing practices, with a focus on how we might activate Indigenous feminist spaces and places in the academy. In their responses, Elena Flores Ruíz uses Mexican feminist Indigenizing discourse to ask what can be done to promote plurifeminist indigenizing practices and North-South dialogues that acknowledge dynamic Indigenous pasts and diverse contexts for present interactions on Turtle Island. Georgina Tuari Stewart proceeds to describe Mana Wahine indigenous feminist theory from Aotearoa before proceeding to develop a “kitchen logic” of mana, which parallels Anderson’s understanding of tawow. Finally, Madina Tlostanova reflects on how several ways of advancing indigenous feminist academic activism described by Anderson intersect with examples from her own native Adyghe indigenous culture divided between the neocolonial situation and the post-Soviet trauma.

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