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UNH Hosts First Conference on Indigenous People of New England Sept. 17–18

By Lori Wright, Media Relations
September 1, 2010

UNH will host its first conference on the indigenous people of New England, “First Nations, Lasting Nations: Community and University Partnerships in Indigenous New England,” Sept. 17-18, 2010.

The conference will bring together community members and academics to discuss and learn about Native New England history, culture, and language as well as provide an opportunity to explore how university and indigenous community partnerships work. The conference will include formal talks as well as working roundtables on topics from collaborative archaeology to literature to environment. 

“Together, we aim to use this conference as a means for building long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationships between UNH and local communities that enhance scholarship at UNH as well as make UNH more responsible to and accessible by local Native communities,” said Meghan Howey, assistant professor of anthropology and archaeology. 

Co-sponsored by UNH, Gedakina, Inc., Winter Center for Indigenous Traditions, New Hampshire Humanities Council, and American Studies Association, the conference takes place in the Piscataqua Room of Holloway Commons. It is free and open to the public.

Renowned Native American historian Jean O’Brien (White Earth Ojibwe), professor at University of Minnesota and author of “Firsting and Lasting: Writing Indians Out of Existence in New England,” will deliver the keynote address at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18. The conference also will include an evening performance with Joseph and Jesse Bruchac (Abenaki) on Friday, Sept. 17. The Bruchacs are well-known community members working to preserve Abenaki language, music and traditional culture.

In addition, the Dimond Library Special Collections will hold an exhibit of New England-based indigenous artists, curated by George Longfish (Seneca), which will run throughout fall semester.

The complete conference schedule is available at http://www.neculture.org/indigenous/2010/schedule.html. For more information, contact Siobhan Senier, associate professor of English, at ssenier@unh.edu or 2-2466.

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