Cherokee scholar to present AIR talk Sept. 21

photo of man with books

daniel-heath-justice.jpgFor the last 500 years, and particularly since they began to be displaced and removed from their ancestral homelands, members of Native American tribes of what is now the Southeastern United States have returned for ceremonial rites on the autumnal equinox in late September. The American Indian Returnings (AIR) series in the department of English celebrates and explores the cultural event:

Daniel Heath Justice, an enrolled citizen of the Cherokee Nation, will visit the University of Georgia as the featured speaker for the American Indian Returnings series in the English department of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. He will read from his new work Sept. 21 at 4:15 p.m. in the M. Smith Griffith Auditorium at the Georgia Museum of Art. The event is open free to the public.

The American Indian Returnings, or AIR, series celebrates Native American scholars and authors and their "return" from exile to the Southeast. 

"Each year on the autumnal equinox, a Native from one of the tribes that was removed from the Southeast in the 1830s returns to give a lecture on what it means to return to their homelands. AIR focuses on Southeastern lifeways, stories, literature and scholarship by tribal members whose tribes were here at contact with Europeans but later removed," said LeAnne Howe, the Eidson Distinguished Professor in American Literature.

Justice is professor in First Nations and Indigenous Studies in the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies, with a cross-appointment in English, at the University of British Columbia. He is author of Our Fire Survives the Storm: A Cherokee Literary History and numerous essays in the field of indigenous literary studies, as well as co-editor of a number of critical and creative anthologies and journals.

The richness of American cultural heritage is all around us and also greatly hidden from view. Kudos to Franklin Professor of Native American Studies Jace Weaver, Eidson Distinguished Professor of American Literature LeAnn Howe and the Institute for Native American Studies for their efforts in the is important campus event. Welcometo campus, Dr. Justice.