CFP: Seminar at the Comparative Empire conference

Kevin Morrison Discussion
Call for Papers
June 19, 2023 to June 22, 2023
Subject Fields: 
Australian and New Zealand History / Studies, British History / Studies, Indigenous Studies, Maritime History / Studies

The Indigenous Pacific in the Age of Colonialism

Joshua L. Reid

Workshop at the Society for Global Nineteenth-Century Studies World Congress, 19-22 June 2023

Across the long nineteenth century, Indigenous peoples and places across the Pacific Ocean—inclusive of the islands and continental rim—encountered myriad colonial intrusions, pressures, and opportunities. Drawing from historian Nancy Shoemaker’s typology of twelve different forms of colonialism—see “A Typology of Colonialism,” Perspectives in History 53, no. 7 (Oct. 2015)—this workshop will examine how Indigenous peoples in the Pacific engaged with colonialism. Where did they push back against or facilitate—even support—various forms of colonial efforts and why? Did Indigenous peoples in the Pacific act in colonial ways, especially when we differentiate across the category of colonialism itself? When we center Indigenous peoples in the Pacific, do we see new forms of colonialism, new connections across Epeli Hau‘ofa’s “Sea of Islands” in this period, new examples of the Indigenous longue durée or Indigenous futures?

This workshop seeks to draw an interdisciplinary/transdisciplinary collection of scholars interested in examining these topics and more, particularly as they intersect with the forms of colonialism identified by Shoemaker in 2015. Papers highlighting Indigenous agency are especially welcome. Short papers of around 3,000 words in length (due in mid-May 2023) will be pre-circulated and then workshopped during the three-hour session. The goal is to support works-in-progress that could lead to articles, chapters, or perhaps a special edition of a journal.

Born and raised in Washington State, Joshua L Reid (registered member of the Snohomish Indian Nation) is an associate professor of American Indian Studies and the John Calhoun Smith Memorial Endowed Associate Professor of History at the University of Washington. He holds degrees from Yale University and the University of California, Davis, and is a three-time Ford Foundation Fellow. His publications include the award-winning The Sea Is My Country: The Maritime World of the Makahs (Yale 2015) and Violence and Indigenous Communities: Confronting the Past and Engaging the Present (Northwestern, 2021), which he co-edited with Jeff Ostler and Susan Sleeper-Smith. He currently directs the UW’s Center for the Study of the Pacific Northwest, edits two book series, and serves on the Board of Editors of the American Historical Review. Reid currently researches Indigenous explorers in the Pacific, from the late eighteenth century to the end of the nineteenth century.

Please send a 350-word abstract of your paper together with your CV to, copied to, by 25 March 2023.

This workshop will be held at the Society for Global Nineteenth-Century Studies World Congress, 19-22 June 2023, in Singapore. All workshop participants will be listed in the conference program as presenters. Accepted participants will be expected to register for the conference and become members of the Society if they are not already. 

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