UAA History and Alaska Native Studies partner for Fall 2017 lecture series

September 22, 2017

The UAA Department of History and the Alaska Native Studies Program are partnering on a series of lectures this fall in recognition of 2017 being the year of History and Culture, per Governor Walker’s declaration.

The series will feature speakers such as Dave McMahan, who did an archaeological analysis of the Russian ship the Neva, which sank due to a Tlingit Shaman curse, a special panel for Indigenous Peoples Day, and Indigenous historian Zonnie Gorman (Diné), who will do a Q-and-A at the Bear Tooth Theatrepub, in addition to a featured lecture on the Navajo Code Talkers of World War II to commemorate Veteran’s Day at UAA.

Oct. 2 — The Wreck of the Neva and Tlingit Shaman Power
Monday, Oct. 2, 6:30–8 p.m.
UAA/APU Consortium Library, Room 307

Dave McMahan was project lead in a multi-disciplinary research project in which archaeologists discovered and excavated the Neva, a Russian ship that sank in Southeast Alaskan in 1813, after a Tlingit Ixt! or shaman put a curse on it. X’ulteen L’aakaw Eesh Kyle Wark (UAA alumnus) will address Tlingit Shamanism.

Oct. 9 – Indigenous Peoples Day – Colonization & Columbus: Rethinking Empire
Monday, Oct. 9, 6–8 p.m.
Gorsuch Commons

Panel discussing the significance of having Columbus Day re-examined, re-focused and re-named, and revisiting “colonial” history. Cordelia Kelley (Inupiaq), a legislative aide who helped move the Indigenous Peoples Day (IPD) legislation through to become law, will address how this was accomplished. Maria Crouch, psychology Ph.D. student at UAA, will discuss the impact of microaggression and the importance of IPD as a means of bringing awareness to the lived experiences of indigenous peoples as a means of decolonization. Subhankar Banerjee, internationally recognized artist/writer/activist, will also speak at the event.

Oct. 23 — ‘The Alaska Equal Rights Act, Alaskan Segregation and the Paradox of Indigenous Assimilation’
Monday, Oct. 23, 6:30 p.m.
UAA/APU Consortium Library, Room 307

Holly Miowak Guise (Inupiaq) is a history Ph.D. candidate at Yale University completing her dissertation on WWII Alaska Native history. Born in Anchorage, and Inupiaq with family from Unalakleet, her research travels have carried her across Alaska. Join us for a discussion of her research.

Nov. 8 — Special event celebrating Veterans – ‘Windtalkers’ screening plus Q-and-A with Zonnie Gorman
Wednesday, Nov. 8, 5:30 p.m.
Bear Tooth Theatrepub

Zonnie Gorman, a history Ph.D. student at University of New Mexico, will be a special guest and do a Q-and-A after a screening of the film Windtalkers. One of the characters in the film is based on her father. She is writing her dissertation on the Navajo Code talkers of World War II. Tickets available soon at the Bear Tooth website.

Nov. 13 — Zonnie Gorman presents ‘Navajo Code Talkers of World War II’
Monday, Nov. 13, 6–8 p.m.
Fine Arts Building, Room 150

Zonnie Gorman will discuss her doctoral dissertation and research on Navajo Code talkers of World War II.

For more information, contact the Alaska Native Studies program at UAA at (907) 786-6135 or email This lecture series is sponsored by the UAA Department of History, Alaska Native Studies Program, Diversity Action Council and UAA’s Military and Veteran Student Support Services.

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