Keynote Speaker: Alice Te Punga Somerville (University of Waikato)
In the last two decades, new methodologies have emerged for analysing the entanglements
between European and non-European histories in sites of colonisation. Settler Colonial
Studies has emerged as an interdisciplinary project that seeks to move beyond frameworks
dominated by questions of race and identity, and towards a transnational analysis of settler
colonialism as a structure with its own particular and distinct logics and practices. However,
despite the critical stance towards imperial and colonial ideologies and practices, many
scholars in Critical Indigenous Studies have argued persuasively that Settler Colonial Studies
undermines the Indigenous activist standpoint and replicates colonial power. In this reading,
the structural approach of Settler Colonial Studies ‘posits a structural inevitability to settler
colonial relations that leaves no space for individual agency for both Indigenous people and
settler colonists alike’.
In literary studies, the ‘transnational turn’ in American, Victorian and Romantic Studies has
led to a critical reassessment of nationalist literary historiographies that efface the influence
of colonisation on Anglophone literary culture during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
In recent years, frameworks from Critical Race and Indigenous Studies, as well as those from
new imperial history, globalisation theory and Settler Colonial Studies, have led to a critical
re-examination of the role that colonisation and colonial practices of knowledge gathering
had on British and American literary culture, and a renewed focus on the literary cultures and
institutions of the settler colonies.
This symposium, a collaboration between the Centre for Indigenous and Settler Colonial
Studies at the University of Kent and the ERC Southem project at University College Dublin,
aims to bring scholars and activists working in Critical Indigenous Studies and Settler
Colonial Studies into closer dialogue with those working in the fields of transnational
American Studies and Global Victorian and Romantic Studies. It aims to produce new
research collaborations and methodologies for critically examining the complex cultural
entanglements between the various European and non-European cultures operating under the
conditions of colonisation during the eighteenth and nineteenth-centuries.
We invite proposals for panels, papers and other forms of presentation that speak to one or
more of the following topics:
The impact of the ‘transnational turn’ on analyses of Indigenous/settler relations
Indigenous and settler mobilities: migration, emigration, colonisation, displacement,
Indigenous survivance and resistance
Indigenous and settler identities that exceed, resist or complicate the
Indigenous and settler print culture
The problems inherent in accessing Indigenous texts through the colonial archive
Temporal disjunctions in representations of colonial modernity and Indigenous
peoples/cultures in print culture
The role of Indigenous people in colonial knowledge networks
The problematics of pre-modern/modern/post-modern
Methodological frameworks such as colonial, settler colonial, postcolonial, decolonial
Geographical scales beyond the nation state: global; transnational; transregional;
Postcolonial Digital Humanities and Indigenous Data Sovereignty
300 word abstracts, along with short bios, to be submitted to Dr. Lara Atkin
L.E.Atkin@kent.ac.uk by Friday February 28th 2020.
 Corey Snelgrove, Rita Kaur Dhamoon and Jeff Corntassel, ‘Unsettling Settler Colonialism: The Discourse and Politics of Settlers, and Solidarity with Indigenous Nations’, Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society 3, no. 2 (2014).