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Indigenous Nations Studies

Indigenous Nations Studies
Indigenous Nations Studies at Portland State University aims to provide the best possible educational experiences for our students through excellence in teaching, research, creative activity and service to the state, tribes and society's.

Black and Brown Planets: The Politics of Race in Science Fiction

Black and Brown Planets: The Politics of Race in Science Fiction
Black and Brown Planets embarks on a timely exploration of the American obsession with color in its look at the sometimes contrary intersections of politics and race in science fiction.


Winter Greetings- from the Director of the Indigenous Nations Studies Program:

Greetings relatives!  With the wonderful winter season upon us, we rejoice in our seasonal growth cycle too.  Winter time is a special time we enter into a different consciousness of reflection, mostly because we spend a lot of our time indoors. So what we are going through is a natural winter season of letting go, our time to seriously reflect upon our lives, our purpose at the university. For some of us, it’s the time of letting go of old ideas and refreshing ourselves with an reawakening of critical consciousness about who we are in the world and reflect upon why we do what we do.  It’s a time to reset ourselves with purpose and goals. 

 These personal changes in season are congruent and in harmony with the environmental season as well. So too as two-legged human beings, so do organizations go through their own winds of changes.  So as we reflect upon our work and studies on campus, I wish you well as you cast off layer after layer of your own decolonization and coming into a renewal state of becoming of critical consciousness.  Winter season is the opportunist time to return back to help ourselves, help lead our communities back to wellness. 

 With the recent passing of Warrior Scholar Professor Charlotte Goodluck (School of Social Work), condolence ceremonies help us infuse a set of political and social values that are drawn from the knowledge base of Indigenous ways of knowing, and in doing so pay tribute to the craft wisdom taught to us by our warrior scholars about the philosophy of societal and governmental organizations.  In the winter season Condolence ceremony represents a decolonizational method of bringing the people back to a conscious reawakening and power of reason.  The School of Social Work established the Charlotte Tsoi Goodluck Endowed Memorial Scholarship via the PSU Foundation to honor students that reflect a social justice foundation. This scholarship gift is a reflection and example of the spirit of condolence. 

I am very proud that Dr. Brook Colley has stepped in this winter term to teach a dynamic new course on Vine Deloria, Jr.  Professor Grace Dillon is the chair of the School of Gender, Race and Nations’ Director Search Committee and chairs the SGRN curriculum committee.  Judy Bluehorse Skelton’s recent grants created partnerships with Metro, the City’s Bureau of Environmental Services and Portland Parks/Inter-Tribal Gathering Gardens which provided paid internships for Native students in these respective areas. Many of our affiliated faculty are very active in their scholarly works and community collaborations. 

Please welcome Nadine Bishay as our new work study student in INST.  Nadine comes to campus with a BS in Biology from UC Riverside. Here at PSU, she is pursuing a post-bac in biology. Nadine is a wonderful addition to our program.  She’s polite, gracious and delightful to work with on a daily basis. 

We are currently planning many new dynamic courses and exciting events this winter and spring terms for our students. Please let’s catch up during our winter term office hours. Heeding the voices of our ancestors, I thank you for helping us grow and building a strong program in Indigenous Nations Studies.

Cornel Pewewardy