Fire & Flood: Settler Colonialism & Pessimistic Indigenous Futurisms

Thursday, September 27, 2018  4:00pm The Heyman Center, Second Floor Common Room

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Caught within the both/and of late colonial collapse and the fantasies of revolutionary upheaval, American futurities often reproduce themselves through nineteenth-century signs of Indianness within the ongoing context of colonial domination. This talk close reads HBO's Westworld alongside work by Indigenous women writers including LeAnne Howe and Rebecca Roanhorse to consider how antiblackness and indigeneity function within the logics of settler colonialism and how Indigenous futurisms and their pessimisms anticipate ruin as radical resistance.

Jodi A. Byrd is a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma and associate professor of English and Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she is also a faculty affiliate at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. She is the author of Transit of Empire: Indigenous Critiques of Colonialism (University of Minnesota Press, 2011), and her work on critical Indigenous studies, queer Indigenous studies, and critical technology studies has appeared most recently in Settler Colonial Studies, Social Text, South Atlantic Quarterly and in Joanne Barker’s edited collection, Critically Sovereign: Indigenous Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies (Duke University Press, 2017).

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