I have taught in the Women and Gender Studies Program at Wilfrid Laurier University since 2013.
My research thus far has focused on colonialism and the history of Indigenous-settler relations in Canada, the ways Indian policy has targeted /impacted Indigenous women, and the political and economic interests served.
My first book is entitled An Act of Genocide: Colonialism and the Sterilization of Aboriginal Women (Fernwood Publishing, 2015). It considers the coerced sterilization of Indigenous women from the 1930s-70s as the practice arose out of the eugenics movement. Through archival research, I began formally documenting the coerced sterilization of Indigenous women, while seeking to ground the practice within the larger context of colonialism, the oppression of women and the denial of Indigenous sovereignty. I argue that coerced sterilization was one of many policies and practices employed to separate Aboriginal peoples from their lands and resources while reducing the numbers of those to whom the federal government has obligations.
I continue to pursue questions that remain around this practice. I am currently working on a SSHRC funded project entitled “Family Planning and Forced Sterilization of Indigenous Women in Saskatchewan (1970-2015): An Archival Case Study.” This project will generate, based on extensive historical records, a better understanding of the coerced sterilization of Indigenous women in the province of Saskatchewan since the 1970s. Central to this project is to examine how the formation of family planning policy and practice in Saskatchewan is linked to a larger historical, political, economic and social context, and how this shapes societal approaches to Indigenous reproduction. This project employs a historical materialist, critical feminist, and decolonial theoretical perspective centered on Indigenous specificities of experience.
I am also interested in critiquing western notions of feminism and the ways it has participated in/reinforced colonial relations, and what is means to "decolonize feminism."
I was previously involved in the Living Archives on Eugenics in Western Canada, a five year Community-University Research Alliances-funded project seeking to produce an accessible history of eugenics in Alberta.
For research opportunities, please contact me directly.
Languages spoken: English and French