Protecting Earth's Last Great Wild Salmon Fishery: Pebble Mine

Wednesday, September 25, 6:00pm-7:30pm

Smith-Buonnano Hall, Room 106, 95 Cushing St, Providence RI

Verner Wilson III (Curyung, Environmental Studies '08) and Deenaalee Hodgdon (Deg Xit'an Dene/Alutiiq, Anthropology '19) discuss the impacts of the proposed mine on the people, fish, animals, land and waters of their region of Bristol Bay.

Narragansett Food Sovereignty Initiative: Public Humanities Lunch Talk with Cassius Spears

Thursday, October 8

John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities, 357 Benefit St., Providence, RI 02912

Cassius Spears will discuss his work with the Narragansett Food Sovereignty Initiative at Crandall Minacommuck Farm in Westerly, RI, a parcel of land owned by the Narragansett Tribe. The Initiative is developing community gardens, individual lease gardens, a farm stand, a historic farm museum, and educational trails. Cassius Champlin Spears Sr. has dedicated his life to the preservation of Narragansett culture throughout New England and the world. He has worked as a Cultural Educator for the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and has served as Cultural Advisor for numerous educational projects including the PBS documentary “We Shall Remain – After the Mayflower.” He has served on Plimoth Plantation’s Wampanoag Indigenous Program’s Advisory Board, and the New England Foundation for the Arts’ Native Arts Advisory Committee. In 2016 Spears represented the Narragansett community in Marrakech, Morocco, at the COP22 UNESCO pre-conference, sharing the effects of climate change from the Narragansett perspective.

Native American and Indigenous Studies Brown Bag Series: Alyssa Mt. Pleasant

Thursday, October 24

Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology, 21 Prospect St., Providence, RI 02912

Alyssa Mt. Pleasant (Tuscarora), PhD, specializes in Native American and Indigenous Studies, with a focus on Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) history during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Her broader teaching and research interests include early American history, American Indian social and intellectual histories; settler colonialism, especially as it relates to legal and educational systems; conceptualizations of space, place, and land tenure in Indian Country; and public history. Her work has or will be published in American Indian Quarterly and several collections of scholarly work. She is currently revising a manuscript titled, "After the Whirlwind: Haudenosaunee People and the Emergence of U.S. Settler-coloniailsm, 1780-1825."

Reflections on "Drone Warriors: the Art of Surveillance and Resistance at Standing Rock," a Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology Exhibit, by Co-curator Dr. Adrienne Keene

Thursday, October 24

Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology, 21 Prospect St., Providence, RI 02912

NAIS faculty member and Assistant Professor in American Studies Adrienne Keene will reflect on her co-curated exhibit on the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology on Drone Warriors at Standing Rock. As the Water Protectors faced militarized police, National Guard roadblocks, and heavy surveillance from local, state, and federal forces, a group of photographic drone operators emerged within their ranks. These Drone Warriors used technology to document the militarized force and police brutality the Water Protectors faced. By sending their drones up and over barricades, they illuminated spaces hidden from the public, unmasked the face of force, and showed the world the beauty of the landscape that was threatened by construction and potential contamination. Their images motivated Water Protectors to join the movement in person, through donations, or by spreading the word on Facebook and with hashtags like #NoDAPL. We can view the use of drones by the Drone Warriors as an indigenization of neocolonial military and corporate surveillance technology. However, we also see in these images forms of aesthetic protest in which the beauty of the water, land, and the Movement itself are on full display.

Native American and Indigenous Studies Brown Bag Series: Darren Ranco 

Monday, November 4

Darren Ranco is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and the Coordinator of Native American Research at the University of Maine. His research focuses on the ways in which indigenous communities in the United States resist environmental destruction by using indigenous diplomacies and critiques of liberalism to protect cultural resources, and how state knowledge systems, rooted in colonial contexts, continue to expose indigenous peoples to an inordinate amount of environmental risk. He teaches classes on indigenous intellectual property rights, research ethics, environmental justice and tribal governance. A member of the Penobscot Indian Nation, he is particularly interested in how better research relationships can be made between universities, Native and non-Native researchers, and indigenous communities.

Reflections on "Sacred is Sacred: The Art of Protecting Bears Ears," a Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology Exhibit, by Curator Isabella Robbins 

Friday, December 6th

Curator Isabella Robbins (Navajo, Public Humanities MA '19) reflects on her exhibit in the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology before its closing. For many years, Indigenous peoples have fought to designate Bears Ears as a national monument. Its two iconic buttes rising from the southern Utah skyline are now the center of a contested sacred landscape. These buttes and the land surrounding them were homes to Indigenous people who used its natural features for hundreds of generations before President Obama declared it a national monument in December 2016. The land is marked with petroglyphs made by those who used its plants, animals and other natural materials to make their food, homes, and culture. The area is embedded within creation stories and tales known to ancestors and people today. However, this area is also rich in oil and gas. Renewed calls for resource extraction threaten the natural and cultural landscape of Bears Ears. One year after President Obama’s monument dedication, President Trump removed 85% of the monument from protected status. Indigenous peoples are leading the fight for its protection. Translated through arts, contemporary and past, this exhibition examines many stories of Bears Ears: the beauty of the land, the ways in which Indigenous peoples have come together to start a movement, the roles women and youth play in it, and how people are learning and healing through their fight to protect Bears Ears and preserve its sacrality. Through the voices and works in this exhibit, you will see and explore why protecting Bears Ears and the movement is important to Indigenous peoples and why it should be important to you.