JHI Fellowships

The heart of the Jackman Humanities Institute is its Circle of Fellows, a group of scholars at every level from undergraduate to faculty, who are chosen for the excellence of their research and for its relevance to the Annual Theme. Fellows hold private offices (or in the case of undergraduate fellows, carrels) in a quiet, shared enclave; they attend a weekly lunch to hear one of their members or an invited guest discuss their research; they organize events for the group such as tours, reading groups, and informal parties; and they talk. In the process of sharing their projects and the contours of their various disciplines, they find new ways to conceptualize their work, discover resources, and force each other to think beyond disciplinary assumptions to the wider goal of how their project addresses the Humanities as a whole.

This page provides information about current fellows.

For fellowship applications, please see Calls for Funding.

The Circle of Fellows, 2020-2021 | Annual Theme: Collectives

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CHCI-SSHRC Collaborative Postdoctoral Fellow

Khaled Abu Jayyab

Khaled Abu Jayyab (Ph.D. Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations, University of Toronto, 2019) recently completed doctoral research titled “Nomads in late Chalcolithic Mesopotamia: Mobility and Social Change in the 5th and 4th Millennium BC” based in extensive archaeological research conducted in the Republic of Georgia on the origins of viticulture and wine production. His work has regularly brought him into engagement with government agencies in Canada and Georgia, museum partnerships, media outreach initiatives with public school students.

What I'm working on

Landscape Archaeology and Human Adaptation to Changing Environmental Conditions during late prehistory in the southeastern Caucasus

While at the Jackman Humanities Institute Khaled will work to teach the public about archaeology and environmental change. His research focuses on diachronically understanding human responses to changes in environmental conditions through changes in settlement organization and subsistence strategies, bringing a time-depth perspective to discussions of contemporary climate change.

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JHI Undergraduate Fellows, 2020-21

Korede Akinkunmi

FAS International Relations and Political Science | Zoltan Simo Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project title: "Combatting Hegemonic Development with Social Movements"
Supervisor, Girish Daswani, UTSC Department of Anthropology

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Visiting Public Humanities Faculty Fellow, 2020-21

Robyn Autry

Robyn Autry (Ph.D. Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2008) is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Sociology at Wesleyan University. She is an interpretive sociologist with broad interests in cultural practices associated with black identity, memory and violence, and representation. Her work on the politics of museum development in the US and South Africa has been published in edited volumes and several journals, including Theory & Society and Museum & Society. Her book Desegregating the Past: The Public Life of Memory in the US and South Africa compares post-apartheid and post-civil rights museum politics (Columbia University Press, 2017). Her current book project Selfishly Black, considers how we personally experience and make sense of collective phenomena like racism and colorism. In addition to her public writing, she has given several public talks and is experimenting with others forms of public engagement such as storytelling events.

What I'm working on

Selfishly Black: Personalizing the Collective

During the coming year at the JHI, Professor Autry will complete a book manuscript that explores ways that the collective experience of blackness may be creative, unique and free: outside the expected re-enactments of someone else’s vision or fantasy. She does so by locating herself within a series of cases that undo race as culturally fixed and immutable. Her writing combines personal, accessible auto-theoretical and deeply analytical ethnographic approaches, bringing personal narrative into contact with critical social analysis. As Selfishly Black approaches publication, Autry will also be developing a collection that grows out of this work: Abject Beauty, which develops ideas around the aesthetics and politics of black womens’ bodies, specifically hair, skin, and nails, and which is targeted to a general audience. She will publish a series of shorter feature and opinion pieces for newspapers, blogs, and online literary and popular magazines as a fellow.

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JHI Undergraduate Fellows, 2020-21

Grace Cameron

FAS English and Women & Gender Studies; minor in Equity Studies | Jan Blumenstein Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project title: "Creative Productions in the Canadian Prison System"
Supervisor, Eve Tuck, OISE Department of Social Justice Education

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Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities, 2020-21

Caryl Clark

Faculty of Music

Caryl Clark (Ph.D. 1991, Cornell University) is Professor of Music. Her research and teaching interests include Enlightenment aesthetics, Haydn studies, gender and ethnicity in opera, the politics of musical reception, piano cultures, Glenn Gould, and music entrepreneurship. She has held four SSHRC grants on eighteenth-century musical topics, and a Halbert Foundation Grant with The Hebrew University in Jerusalem investigating the Jewish Diaspora in music, theatre and culture. She is the co-editor, most recently, of the Cambridge Haydn Encyclopedia (Cambridge UP, 2019), and the author of Haydn’s Jews: Representation and Reception on the Operatic Stage (Cambridge UP, 2009).

What I'm working on

Music Collectives: Evolving Operatic Practices

Clark’s research project will examine the range and vitality of independent opera collectives operating in Toronto today, investigating their simultaneous engagement with both earlier operatic repertories and contemporary societal issues. During her fellowship year, she will bring the history of eighteenth-century opera (from Handel to Haydn and Mozart) into conversation with today’s “indie” musical collectives, assessing how the latter revisit and revise early operatic themes, practices, and performance conventions. Her comparative work will promote links between scholars and contemporary musical collectives and creators.

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Community-Engaged Early Career Fellow, 2020-21

Francesca D'Amico-Cuthbert

Francesca D’Amico-Cuthbert holds a doctorate in American History from York University.  Her research interests include the history of urban popular music forms in the United States and Canada, feminist readings of popular culture, and the relationship of racialized artists to social justice movements and state apparatuses and discourses. Francesca is also a filmmaker working on a forthcoming full-length documentary film (and accompanying film curriculum) on mixed race identities, with a second film in the initial stages of development.

What I'm working on

The Politics of ‘Urban Music’: A Case Study of the Toronto Hip Hop Community and Rap Music Marketplace, 1985-2010

Francesca’s research project will analyze the interface of race, art, community, commerce, and ‘urban music’ in the City of Toronto. She explores the role of the urban imaginary in shaping the racial economy of creative industries, the poetics of community politics in late-20th-c. Canada, and the collective agency and standing of the Toronto Hip Hop community in the national music marketplace. This study will root the social power relations that characterize the infrastructure of the music industry in a much longer African-Canadian past. During her time at the JHI, Francesca will conduct oral interviews, consult archival collections, and identify industry practices that have shaped the commercial trajectory of the Toronto Hip Hop community’s entry into the Canadian music marketplace. Her work will take the form of conference presentations, an academic monograph, and a story-mapping website. The project will highlight how the development of an ‘urban music’ market in and beyond Canada has been intimately shaped by the poetics and politics of Hip Hop as well as narratives of belonging and representations of the national imaginary.

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Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities, 2020-21

Girish Daswani

UTSC Department of Anthropology

Girish Daswani (Ph.D. 2007, London School of Economics) is Associate Professor in the UTSC Department of Anthropology. His research interests include Ghana, religion, morality and ethics, transnationalism, corruption and activism. His most recent scholarly work has been exploring different activist and religious responses to corruption in Ghana. In addition to several journal articles, he has published a monograph entitled Looking Back, Moving Forward: Transformation and Ethical Practice in the Ghanaian Church of Pentecost (2015, University of Toronto Press) and co-edited A Companion to Diaspora and Transnationalism Studies with Prof. Ato Quayson (2013, Wiley-Blackwell). His most recent public-facing work has been exploring the ways in which imperialism, colonialism, and Orientalism have impacted (and are still impacting) popular politics and the field of Anthropology.

Girish recently gave a talk titled The Portraits on the Wall: On the Whiteness of Academia. If you missed it or want to watch it again, you can find it on YouTube.

 

What I'm working on

Activist and Artistic Responses to Corruption in Ghana

Daswani’s project seeks to understand how communities of activists differ from each other, how they view the role of individuals within collectives and the distinct ways in which they imagine the past and future. His research, which started in 2015, has shown how members of the two groups whom he has met follow separate approaches to activism. While cooperation sometimes occurs between activists and artists, he discovered that they are distinct in their class orientations, in their motivations and expectations of future change, and in their organizational forms of sociality. Both groups are responding to the cynicism of other middle-class Ghanaians, who seemed indifferent to the corruption of Ghana’s political elite. Yet in their response to political corruption, their articulation of how they came together as individuals demonstrates different kinds of activist sociality and subjectivities. What is emerging is an ethnography of protest, of its creative potential, and of its limits.

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Artists-in-Residence 2020-21

Vanessa Dion Fletcher

Vanessa Dion Fletcher’s artistic practice includes the use of porcupine quills, her won body in performance, in order to examine issues related to Indigenous language revitalization, feminist Indigenous corporeality, land as pedagogy, decolonization, and neurodiversity. In particular her work confronts the ways that Indigeneity, the queer and gendered body, and disability are rendered expendable. Quills, she states, are evocative of Land, where porcupine becomes teacher and/or co-learner. As a practice of honoring Land, quill work, then is about reciprocity and relations between human and more-than humans where language is sentient and felt, not merely coded and transcribed.

What I'm working on

Reconciliation and Education: Artistic Actions and Critical Conversations aims to activate and develop Indigenous artistic actions and engage in critical conversations regarding the politics of reconciliation in education. What is reconciliation? How do we engage with it through practices that do not perpetuate harm and violence? In what ways can art stand as an act of resistance and provoke critical dialogue? What role does art have in speaking back to colonial institutions, and educational policies and practices? How might artists help reconceptualize understandings of land and land acknowledgments? In what ways might art act as a catalyst in forging new pedagogical relationships?

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JHI Undergraduate Fellows, 2020-21

Claire Ellis

FAS English and Biology; minor in Psychology | Michael Lutsky Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project title: "A Prophet without a Hometown: Adapting Homecoming Narratives to Justify Leaders Originating Outside a Collective"
Supervisor, Girish Daswani, UTSC Department of Anthropology

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New Media and Public Humanities Postdoctoral Fellow, 2020-21

Melissa J. Gismondi

Melissa J. Gismondi is a writer and journalist, who holds a PhD in American history from the University of Virginia. Her current work-in-progress is a monograph titled Quiet Canadian, Angry American: Separating Fact from Fiction About What Makes Us Different. Her writing has appeared in major media outlets, including The Washington Post, Salon, Toronto Star, and The Walrus, among others. As a radio and podcast producer, she contributes to national network programs on CBC Radio and the podcast BackStory. Gismondi was selected as a Writers' Trust Rising Star by Charlotte Gray.

What I'm working on

Quiet Canadian, Angry American: Separating Fact from Fiction about What Makes us Different

Melissa’s project looks at the relationship between Canadian and American culture and identity. As part of her argument, she investigates how Anglo-Canadian identity has been defined in opposition to the US. She argues that this has distorted Canadians' and Americans' image of our country, often creating an apathetic outlook that hampers the kind of deep self-reflection Canada needs on race, on reconciliation, on climate change and much more. As American politics, culture and geopolitical power undergo profound changes since the 2016 election of President Donald Trump, Melissa questions how these changes will impact Canadians' sense of themselves and how we define our imagined national communities.

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Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities, 2020-21

Cara Krmpotich

Faculty of Information

Cara Krmpotich (D.Phil. 2008, University of Oxford) is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Information and directs the Museum Studies program. She is a museum anthropologist who researches and teaches in the areas of critical collections management, Indigenous and museum relationships, cultural property, and material culture and memory. She has research relationships with the Great Lakes Research Alliance for the Study of Aboriginal Arts and Cultures (GRASAC); the South-North Dialogue on Aesthetic Education between the University of Toronto and the University of the Western Cape; and the Haida Repatriation Committee. She is the author of The Force of Family: repatriation, kinship and memory on Haida Gwaii, (University of Toronto Press, 2014) and co-author of This Is Our Life: Haida material heritage and changing museum practice (UBC Press, 2013).

What I'm working on

An Implicated Orchestra

Krmpotich’s research will explore a collection of almost thirty tamburitzas: stringed, Croatian folk instruments that can be played and enjoyed as solo instruments, but that can also be combined as an ensemble or an orchestra – a collective. They have been played by three generations of her family, but mostly have been on loan to families within the Croatian community in Sault Ste. Marie who have participated as players, dancers and singers. She will research the instruments, along with archival photos taken of the instruments and musicians over the last century, regional costumes used in performances, and original orchestral sheet music to bring forth and bring together multiple collectives: a collection of artifacts; an immigrant community; generations of a family; and a nation reconciling its Indigenous-Settler identity.

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Chancellor Jackman Graduate Fellowships in the Humanities, 2020-21

Nadia Lambek

Law

What I'm working on

"Transnational Agrarian Movements and the Normative Elaboration of International Law"

Nadia Lambek is completing her Doctorate of Juridical Science at the University of Toronto's Faculty of Law. Drawing on critical approaches to law and legal anthropology, her research examines how transnational agrarian movements (composed of small-scale food producers, peasants, landless people, fisherfolk, and pastoralists) engage in international legal reform in their struggles to transform food systems. She explores how movements assert claims to collectivity that challenge the impacts of dominant legal and distributional arrangements on rural places and people. Through tracing how movement claims are contested, resisted and reframed through international law-making processes, she hopes to better understand the normative elaboration of international law in areas of deep ideational divide.

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JHI Undergraduate Fellows, 2020-21

Claire Latosinsky

Faculty of Music, Voice performance; minor in English | Jukka-Pekka Saraste Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project title: "Grieg, Sibelius and the Conundrum of "Nordic Art Song:" Comparing Approaches to Balancing Collective National Identity with International Influence"
Supervisor, Caryl Clark, Faculty of Music

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Distinguished Visiting Indigenous Faculty Fellow, 2020-21

Max Liboiron

Memorial University, Geography

Max Liboiron is a science and technology studies (STS) scholar, environmental scientist, and activist. Originally from Lac la Biche (Treaty Six territory), she is Michif-settler. Liboiron directs Civic Laboratory for Environmental Action Research (CLEAR), a feminist, anti-colonial marine science laboratory that specializes in grassroots environmental monitoring of plastic pollution.  An in-progress manuscript builds on this work to articulate pollution as a form of colonialism. Liboiron also runs Discard Studies, an interdisciplinary hub for research on waste and wasting and is the Associate Vice-President (Indigenous Research) at Memorial University.

You can follow Dr. Liboiron on Twitter; her handle is @MaxLiboiron, or learn more about her research online and on the CLEAR website.

What I'm working on

Anticolonial Scientific Laboratory Collectives

Professor Liboiron will be a member of the Circle of Fellows at the Jackman Humanities Institute in 2020-2021, when we will be focussing on the annual theme of Collectives. During her time at the Jackman Humanities Institute, Liboiron will consider the ways ambivalence, compromise, and incommensurabilities are foundational to theories of change in anticolonial, western science collaborations, using CLEAR as a case study. Central to this research is the role of protocol. Protocols ideally orient collective action towards shared goals, values, and outcomes across differences in both scientific and ceremonial collectives: how might protocol provide a structure and scale thorough which to do collective anticolonial science? How are scientific protocols already about colonial land relations, and how might they come to explicitly foster anticolonial and diverse Indigenous land relations instead?

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JHI Undergraduate Fellows, 2020-21

Yun Fei (Georgia) Lin

FAS Equity Studies and Diaspora & Transnational Studies; minor in History | James Fleck Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project title: "Transnational Repatriation Practices: Decolonizing Museum Educations and Public Histories"
Supervisor, Cara Krmpotich, Faculty of Information, Museum Studies Program Director

JHI Undergraduate Fellows, 2020-21

Rui Liu

FAS Women & Gender Studies; minors in Literature & Critical Theory and Diaspora & Transnational Studies
Milton Harris Undergraduate Award in the Humanities

What I'm working on

Project title: "Otherwise and Non-innocent Solidarities"
Supervisor, Eve Tuck, OISE Department of Social Justice Education

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Artists-in-Residence 2020-21

Ange Loft

Ange Loft’s site-specific work with Jumblies Theatre, includes the Talking Treaties Spectacle, an outdoor pageant exploring the treaty history of the Toronto area through words, song, movement and spectacle. Rooted in oral history and community collaboration, Talking Treaties takes audiences on a journey through the place we share and the way it came to be. Inspired by historical research, a team of professional and community performers use vignettes to explore The Dish With One Spoon, The Toronto Purchase, The Treaty of Niagara and more, with humour, boldness and beaver puppets. More recently, Loft created a living and reflexive land acknowledgement document to guide the Toronto Biennale of Art grounded in community knowledge, relationality and oral histories.

What I'm working on

Reconciliation and Education: Artistic Actions and Critical Conversations aims to activate and develop Indigenous artistic actions and engage in critical conversations regarding the politics of reconciliation in education. What is reconciliation? How do we engage with it through practices that do not perpetuate harm and violence? In what ways can art stand as an act of resistance and provoke critical dialogue? What role does art have in speaking back to colonial institutions, and educational policies and practices? How might artists help reconceptualize understandings of land and land acknowledgments? In what ways might art act as a catalyst in forging new pedagogical relationships?

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Chancellor Jackman Graduate Fellowships in the Humanities, 2020-21

Shozab Raza

Anthropology and collaborative graduate program in South Asian Studies

What I'm working on

"Reimagining the Revolution: Agrarian Mobilization and the Worker-Peasant Party in Pakistan's Periphery"

Shozab Raza is finishing his Ph.D. in Anthropology with a focused study on communist-led agrarian mobilizations in the South Punjab region of Pakistan. Peasant participants in these struggles often navigated between various attachments – including to communism, Islam, tribe and Siraiki nationalism – to produce a re-imagination of "revolution" that exceeded the expectations of urban-based revolutionary leaders. Drawing on 18 months of ethnographic and archival research in rural Pakistan, his project considers how this "excess" theory-making drove ordinary people's participation in a collective, how collectives affect the agency of the individual, and how collectives can function as intentional agents in their own right that perform political work.

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JHI Digital Humanities Postdoctoral Fellow, 2020-21

Jennifer Ross

Jennifer Ross is the Digital Humanities Network Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto's Jackman Humanities Institute. She researches contemporary American literature, literary and cultural theory, critical disaster and terrorism studies, and the digital humanities. Her dissertation, "Insurgents on the Bayou: Hurricane Katrina, Counterterrorism, and Literary Dissent on America’s Gulf Coast," explores forms of political resistance put forward in literature and film produced after the flooding of New Orleans in 2005. In 2019, Jennifer was awarded the Michael R. Halleran Dissertation Completion Fellowship from William & Mary, as well as earned an Honorable Mention from the Ford Foundation Dissertation Completion Fellowship.Her research can be found in two forthcoming edited volumes, Transnational Spaces: Intersections of Cultures, Languages, and Peoples (Vernon Press 2020) and Liberal Disorder: Emergency Politics, Populist Uprisings, and Digital Dictatorships (Routledge 2020). Future projects will explore counterterror security measures after more recent natural disasters and in response to democratic protest. 

What I'm working on

Counterterrorism and Resistance in 21st Century America

Jennifer’s new research charts the proliferating use of and resistance to counterterror/counterinsurgent security measures in the United States between 2005 and the present day. Her project identifies hurricane disasters and democratic protest as important sites through which national leaders entrench war-time counterterror tactics in domestic governance and policing. Jennifer is particularly interested in how the U.S. government deploys the rhetoric of warfare and insurgency alongside paramilitary forces to quell what is perceived to be racialized unrest. Building on her work with Hurricane Katrina, Jennifer begins by researching the U.S. approach to disaster planning and response in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. She then turns to the #NoDAPL protests at Standing Rock and the #BlackLivesMatter protests in Portland, Oregon, to demonstrate the expansion of counterterrorism from exceptional circumstances to the mundane. Jennifer will then draw from literary texts, oral histories, and film to explore how racialized communities not only resisted criminalization as “insurgents” and “extremists” but also imagined more just and democratic futures. As she completes this work, she will continue to add to her digital mapping visualization of counterterrorism and resistance at narrativeresistance.org.

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Chancellor Jackman Faculty Research Fellow in the Humanities, 2020-21

Eve Tuck

OISE Department of Social Justice Education

Eve Tuck (Ph.D. 2008, The Graduate Center, City University of New York) is Associate Professor of Critical Race and Indigenous Studies and Canada Research Chair of Indigenous Methodologies with Youth and Communities. She is Unangax and is an enrolled member of the Aleut Community of St. Paul Island, Alaska. Her research focuses on how Indigenous social thought can be engaged to create more fair and just social policy, more meaningful social movements, and robust approaches to decolonization. Tuck is the author of Urban Youth and School Pushout (2012) and Place in Research (co-written with Marcia McKenzie, 2015). She is the co-editor of Youth Resistance Research and Theories of Change (with K. Wayne Yang, 2014); Land Education (with Kate McCoy and Marcia McKenzie, 2016); Toward What Justice? Describing Diverse Dreams of Education in Research (with K. Wayne Yang, 2018); and Indigenous and Decolonizing Studies in Education: Mapping the Long View (with Linda Tuhiwai Smith and K. Wayne Yang, 2019). Tuck directs the Tkaronto Collaborative Indigenous Research for Land and Education (CIRCLE) Lab.

What I'm working on

Somewhere Recordings: The Land Relationships Super Collective Album

In collaboration with members of the Land Relationships Super Collective, Tuck will create a recorded album about practices of land rematriation. It will consist of (I) excerpts of the “somewhere recordings,” created between 2015-2020 (II) brand new recordings and re-recordings, created by members of the Super Collective, for the purposes of the album (III) guided meditations, recorded interviews, and other recorded reflections created for the purposes of this album. The album will do the work of a book—it will have introductions, a deliberate order, and will unfold towards making a series of arguments about what is possible now, in terms of land rematriation by Indigenous community organizations and their collaborators. Accompanying the album, there will also be a webpage and a workshop series for Black and Indigenous community members interested in podcast creation.

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Chancellor Jackman Graduate Fellowships in the Humanities, 2020-21

Christina Turner

English

What I'm working on

"Land Forms: The Literary Jurisprudence of Indigenous Rights"

Christina Turner's dissertation investigates Indigenous literary responses to Canada's constitutional recognition of Indigenous rights through the lens of form. Looking to recent Indigenous-authored works of poetry, fiction, and drama, as well as Supreme Court decisions on Aboriginal rights and title, Turner considers how law and literature borrow each other's forms and how these forms collide and interact across texts. She examines how specific words and images deployed across legal decisions create distinctive motifs: the garden, the museum, the family, and the autobiography. She then turns to literary texts (by Jordan Abel, Shirley Sterling, Marie Clements, and Leanne Betasamosake Simpson) where similar motifs are deployed to determine how Indigenous authors use form to critique the Canadian legal system's limited recognition of Indigenous law. Turner's research explores the constraints and necessities of interpretive work across Western and Indigenous traditions, positioning herself respectfully as a settler critic within the colonial legacy of literary studies.