Working with Indigenous Communities Workshop: Dr. Chiara Minestrelli

Speaker / Presenter: 

Dr. Chiara Minestrelli
Monday, September 28, 2015 -
4:10pm to 5:30pm
Williams Hall, Room 450
Working with Indigenous Communities: Methods, Ethics and Ongoing Dilemmas (A Three-Part Workshop)
As a development of Anthropology, and yet departing from it, “Indigenous Studies” is quickly gaining momentum across various institutions as an area of study that examines the: (1) cultures; life worlds; social contributions; (2) changing definitions/politics of classifying “Indigeneity”; (3) global contributions from such communities and their ongoing call for social/political recognition, voice, and legibility, and (4) the role of ethics/cultural sensitivity in conducting research about and with Indigenous peoples when in the field. Ethnography is a potent instrument of possibility in the hands of researchers, and can quickly become a tool of constraint on and for those whom we are learning about. This three-part hands-on workshop led by Dr. Chiara Minestrelli offers scholarly insight learned from her many years of researching and working with Indigenous populations around the globe, in places such as Australia, Italy, and more recently, Central and Southeastern parts of Asia, and offers space to think further about the ethical/methodological/theoretical limits of research on and working with this population.
Among other questions of significance, this workshop asks, “Is it possible to work within decolonizing frameworks from a non-Indigenous perspective?” With varying Indigenous communities in mind and with examples from fieldwork with Australian Indigenous artists in urban areas and Indigenous people from Northern Mongolia, among others, we will consider ethnographic methods across various fields with the following topics/issues in mind:
  •    What are the “insider/outsider” challenges facing ethnographers (insider and outsider researchers) researching and 
        working with Indigenous communities?
  •   How can researchers decolonize their methods and approaches while being attentive to the “colonial baggage” so 
        often carried with much of our academic language?  
  •    What dangers might accompany our scholarly classifications of research such as “urban vs. remote” and “traditional 
        vs. modern?” 
Additional Workshop Dates: October 7 and October 20, Williams Hall, Room 450.