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(Oct. 25) School of Sociology and Anthropology Academic Lecture

Last updated :2013-10-21

Topic: Indigenous Studies: The History and Future of the Discipline
Speaker: Dr. Brendan Hokowhitu

Time: 9:30-11:00 AM, Friday, October 25, 2013
Venue: Lecture Hall, 2 floor, Martin Hall, South Campus, SYSU
Organizer: School of Sociology and Anthropology, SYSU


In what have come to be called ‘Settler-Colonial States’ such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States, over the last 30-40 years Indigenous Studies (IS) and IS Programs have developed as offshoots of various other academic disciplines such as Anthropology, Area Studies, History, Geography, English Literature, etc. This growth in Indigenous Faculties, Schools, Departments and Programs has, as a consequence, been interdisciplinary in nature yet has also lacked focus. The disciplinary evolution has also occurred in temporal conjunction with an increasing awareness of indigenous rights by Federal and Provincial Governments and industry, particularly centring around land, natural resources, culture, language and identity. Hence, attention to the local political context and local cultures of indigenous communities has driven the development of an international disciplinary discourse. In his presentation, Dr. Brendan Hokowhitu examines the short history of the disciplinary underpinnings of Indigenous Studies, and looks at the current programming and future directions of the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta.

Brief Introduction of the Speaker:

Dr. Brendan Hokowhitu is of Ngāti Pukenga descent, an iwi (people) from New Zealand. In 2012, Hokowhitu became Dean and Professor of the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta. Dr. Hokowhitu joined Alberta “because of the uniqueness and autonomy of the Faculty of Native Studies… As the only Faculty of its kind in North America, it provides its students with a wholly distinctive experience.” Dr. Hokowhitu came to Canada following a decade of working in Māori Studies in New Zealand, which helped him hone his vision for the Faculty of Native Studies: “ To produce a better society by educating indigenous and non-indigenous students and communities to be better citizens through excellent research and teaching focused on contemporary indigenous issues and thought”. Dr. Hokowhitu is dedicated to growing community, government, business and industry relationships that will advance indigenous capacity, indigenous knowledge and the discipline of Indigenous Studies. In the 10 years since completing his PhD, Hokowhitu has published across a number of disciplines including in indigenous critical theory, masculinity, media and sport. Brendan has written over 40 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters and is the lead editor of Fourth Eye: Māori Media in Aotearoa/New Zealand (University of Minnesota Press, 2013) and, Indigenous Identity and Resistance: Researching the Diversity of Knowledge (University of Otago Press, 2010).