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American Studies Lecture Series: Scott Morgensen


Thursday, May 1, 2014 4:00 PM - Thursday, May 1, 2014 6:00 PM
SUB - Lobo A&B

Please join us May 1st at 4:00PM at the University of New Mexico for a talk by Scott Morgensen, Associate Professor of Gender Studies and Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. 

Indigenous Governance and the Critique of Queer Settler Colonialism

The field of queer studies bears responsibilities to Indigenous governance, which I address by engaging new work in queer Indigenous studies and advancing the critique of queer settler colonialism. Recent queer and trans* interrogations of incarceration, militarization, and empire resonate with challenges to settler colonialism, but queer theories and politics generally still invest in conquest and anti-indigeneity. Within Native studies, scholars have argued that when queer critics preemptively frame nationhood or kinship as normative, they erase indigeneity and dismiss Indigenous governance. I ply such claims to consider how, among queer non-Natives, embracing non-normativity or the destabilization of boundaries articulates the logic of the frontier to make settlement a condition of queer imaginings. I then ask: When do non-Natives invoke critically queer affinities precisely to evade their landed responsibilities to Indigenous governance? How can gestures to queer anti-colonialism still invest in the work of occupying, incorporating, and replacing Indigenous peoples? I argue that these acts are directly disrupted today when queer Indigenous criticism turns to highlight the decolonization of nationhood, genealogy, and sovereignty within resurgent Indigenous governance.

Scott Morgensen is Associate Professor in the Department of Gender Studies and the Graduate Program in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. He is the author of Spaces between Us: Queer Settler Colonialism and Indigenous Decolonization (University of Minnesota Press, 2011), and the co-editor of Queer Indigenous Studies: Critical Interventions in Theory, Politics, and Literature (University of Arizona Press, 2011) and of “Karangatia: Calling Out Gender and Sexuality in Settler Societies,” special issue of the journal Settler Colonial Studies (2012). His essays appear in American Indian Culture and Research Journal, American Quarterly, Gender Place and Culture, GLQ, Jadaliyya, Periscope, Settler Colonial Studies, Women and Performance, and Women’s Studies, as well as in book collections in the fields of queer, feminist, and Native studies. Currently he is co-editor of the Journal of Critical Race Inquiry and Principal Investigator of a SSHRC-funded ethnographic research project, “Racism and Settler Colonialism in Canadian LGBTQ Politics” (2012-2016).

Sponsored by: American Studies, the American Studies Graduate Student Association, Women Studies program, the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Questioning Resource Center, Peace Studies, Communication and Journalism, English, Anthropology, OutQueerGrads, and the Feminist Research Institute.

This Talk is Free and Open to the Public

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