Conversations among Indigenous, Sociological and Feminist Analyses

Wednesday Jun 05 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm
ANGU 437

Session Code: FEM2
Session Format: Regular
Session Language: English, French
Research Cluster Affiliation: Feminist Sociology, Indigenous Settler Relations and Decolonization
Session Categories: Regular Session

Building on the work of Indigenous feminist scholars, this session examines synergies between and specificities of Indigenous analyses and feminist analyses. It also explores the current relationship and potential of each type of analysis to sociology. What are the ways in which Indigenous and feminist analyses may converge and/or offer complementary sociological insights and analyses? For example, both not only provide a critique of the contemporary world, through such concepts as colonialism and patriarchy, but also often envisage alternatives. And what are key specificities of each (in relation to the other) when considering sociological analyses? Contributions are invited which are informed by one or more of a number of different standpoints and approaches, including 1) collaborative situations of those grounded in both perspectives or in one of them, with consideration of the other, for example through experiences in networks, 2) contributions drawing from the presenter’s own research, 3) theorizing from Indigenous and/or feminist approaches, or from such interrelated concepts as power, violence, equality and justice. Tags: Feminist Studies, Indigenous Studies, Race And Ethnicity

Organizers: Linda Christiansen-Ruffman, Saint Mary's University, Ann B. Denis, University of Ottawa


Chris Southcott, Lakehead University; Patricia McGuire, Carleton University; Josie Zussino, Lakehead University; Alycia Benson, Lakehead University

Creating a safe space for Indigenous youth in urban areas: The Case of Young Women in Thunder Bay

The growth of Canadas Indigenous population combined with conditions in home communities has contributed to an increase in Indigenous peoples living in urban centres where they are facing important challenges. This is especially the case in key cities that serve as "hubs" for a continuous movement of people back and forth between home communities. Thunder Bay is one such hub that has been in the national media numerous times over the past decade as a result of the challenges faced by Indigenous peoples living in that community and especially youth. While these challenges are being faced by both young males and young females, the especially precarious positions of young Indigenous women have been highlighted in the recent RCMP report on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (2014) and in the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. This paper will report on a research project undertaken in partnership with the Ontario Native Women’s Association relating to the difficulties faced by young Indigenous women in contemporary urban areas of Canada using a case study of the City of Thunder Bay, the urban community in Canada with the highest percentage of Indigenous people (Statistics Canada, 2017). Using Indigenous and other methodologies, the project uses the notion of safe space to try and identify what the hopes, dreams, and wishes of these women are and then determine what are the major obstacles to creating this safe space.

Angela Miles, University of Toronto

Integrative Feminist, Indigenous and Commoning Perspectives: Why We Need Each Other

Integrative Feminist, Indigenous, and Commoning perspectives and activism all challenge the basic rationale of society and culture at a very deep level. This paper will:  -explore the alternative values that inform teach of the deep critiques;  -consider the significance of these kinds of challenges at this time;  -identify essential diverse but compatible elements of these very different politics;  -examine the ways dialogue and solidarities can mutually challenge, inform and enrich the analyses and practice of each.