Some of us are braves: Settler universities and the politics of Indigenous refusal 

Dr. Sandy Grande

The title of this presentation is a gesture to Hull’s (et. al.) classic text, “All the Women are White, All the Blacks are Men, But Some of Us Are Brave,” (1982), that grew out of, and in response to, the sexual oppression of Black women in the Black Liberation Movement and racial oppression in the Women’s Movement. Within the context of the neoliberal academy, Indigenous scholars occupy a similarly unique position, often caught between liberal and radical academics (white and of color) whose continued participation in the corporate institution may only serve to legitimate it or ones individual career. In an effort to define the contours of alternative intellectual collectives, the work of critical Indigenous scholars is employed as a means of theorizing the academy as an arm of the settler state; as a space where capitalist social relations and modes of (knowledge) production are reconstituted. The aim is to cultivate spaces of thought and action that not only refuse forms of knowledge and knowledge-making contingent upon settler imperatives but also conscientiously enact others grounded in Indigenous specificity and well-being.