Graduate Program Faculty
3137 Wescoe Hall
Ph.D. (Claremount Graduate)
Areas of Research
American Indian/Native American /Indigenous Literature and Culture, especially Native women’s writing, U.S. ethnic literatures, American literature
Keepers of the Morning Star: An Anthology of Native Women’s Theater. (Edited with Jaye T. Darby). Los Angeles: UCLA American Indian Studies Center, 2003.
Selected Articles, Chapters, Review Essays
“‘I, Wunnatuckquannum, This Is My Hand:’ Native Performance in Massachusett Language Indian Deeds.” Native Acts: Indian Performance, 1603-1832. Eds. Joshua D. Bellin and Laura L. Mielke. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, forthcoming 2011.
“Land and Literacy: the Textualities of Native Studies.” (with Hilary E. Wyss). American Literary History 22.2 (2010): 271-279.
“The Cultural Work of a Mohegan Painted Basket.” Early Native Literacies in New England: A Documentary and Critical Anthology. Eds. Kristina Bross and Hilary E. Wyss. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2008: 52-56.
“Intimate Geographies: Reclaiming Citizenship and Community in The Autobiography of Delfina Cuero and Bonita Nuñez’s Diaries.” American Indian Culture and Research Journal 30.1 (2006): 109-29.
Susan Kelly Power and Helen Hornbeck Tanner Fellowship, Newberry Library, 2009-10
General Research Fund Grant, KU Center for Research, 2009
Association of American University Women American Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2008-9
New Faculty General Research Fund Grant, KU Center for Research, 2007
Mellon Fellow, Future of Minority Studies Project, Cornell University, 2006
My research is both interdisciplinary and trans-historical, and broadly focuses on Native women’s textual and cultural productions from the colonial era to the present. I am often asked why my work focuses on Native women, a question to which I promptly reply, “Why not?” As Patricia Albers and Beatrice Medicine noted back in 1983 in their edited volume The Hidden Half: Studies of Plains Indian Women (University Press of America), there is a dearth of scholarship on Native women in any discipline. And not much has changed since 1983.
While my academic publications to date center on Native women’s textual productions, I do not see my work as a recovery project. I am more interested in countering the historical erasure of Native women by drawing out the connections between gender, law and policy, and land dispossession. From migration narratives painted onto the sides of a late eighteenth century Mohegan woodsplint basket, to seventeenth century land conveyances penned in the Massachusett language, to twentieth century novels taking environmental justice as their focus, my research links the materiality of the texts to their specific historical, cultural, legal, and political contexts. My current book project investigates contemporary Native women’s literary and rhetorical responses to certain defining moments in tribal histories relating to land dispossession, reading them against the court decisions, legislation, and federal policy that set them in motion.