Thursday, 31 July 2014

Racism, White Privilege and Scary Brown Boys... and the Development of a Critical Indigenous Justice Studies

Hi all

Below is a link to an interesting commentary on racism, white privilege and the demonisation of brown boys - enjoy:

Research Project - Maori, Pacific and Indigenous Scholars Experience of the Academy
As reported previously there have been a number of positive developments within the Indigenous Academy, some of which will be discussed below.  I want to take this opportunity to provide background detail on a research project that I am involved with at present, focused on Maori, Pacific and Indigenous scholars experiences of the academy.

The project was developed by, and led by Dr David Mayeda, a researcher and lecturer at the University of Auckland in the Department of Sociology.  The aim of this study is to explore Māori, Pacific and Indigenous experiences of the Academy, with a significant focus on the role of Indigenous academics as leaders, both in the academy and their communities development.small group or individual interviews with Māori, Pacific and international Indigenous academicians. The research project aims to identify the factors that assist Māori, Pacific and Indigenous academicians in their professional development. Some of these factors may include relationships with colleagues, balancing research, service and teaching responsibilities, family support, and professional mentoring.  The research also aims to identify the barriers Indigenous academics face in advancing their careers, and carrying out the research that they and their communities believe is essential to enhancing the social well being of Indigenous peoples.  

If you would like more information on the project, or wish to participate, please contact Dr Mayeda via his email address, or the author of this blog, Juan Tauri, on - we will happily forward a detailed information sheet to you.

Advancing Critical Indigenous Justice Studies
A key highlight of the last 12 months was evidence of an increasing number of Indigenous and non-Indigenous colleagues publishing critical material that privileges the Indigenous perspective on social justice issues.  I had the privilege last year of collaborating with many of these individuals while developing of a special edition of a journal on counter-colonial perspectives (see below for information on the edition).  The work of Stolo academic Dr Wenona Victor on the inequities of the Canadian criminal justice and child care and protection systems and Dr Tamari Kitossa on the policing of black youth, augers well for critical Indigenous scholarship in that particular jurisdiction.  There has also been an increase in critical Maori/non-Maori scholarship in New Zealand, driven by the likes of  University of Auckland academics Dr Robert Webb, Dr Khylie Quince and Assoc. Professor Tracey McIntosh, and Dr Antje Deckert of AUT University.  

Tracey's ground breaking work on Maori experiences of the borstal system of the 1960s/1970s and imprisonment generally, is especially important given the paucity of research on this issue. In the Australian context the rise of Dr Thalia Anthony has given me hope that the golden age of critical Indigenous-inspired research in Australia, is not yet over.  Her recent publications and presentations on the history of colonial, racist policing on Palm Island, and the criminalisation of Aboriginal peoples through social policy in the Northern Territory, are as good as critical, engaging research gets in the contemporary context.  What is also pleasing (and important) is the support we are receiving from the 'old guard' (no disrespect intended), including Professors Chris Cunneen, Harry Blagg and Gillian Cowlishaw in Australia, the esteemed Maori lawyer, Moana Jackson in New Zealand, and the Nigerian criminologist Biko Agozino.

It seems to me the that recent increase in scholarship coincided with a parallel increase in the number of Indigenous academic journals in the last 10 to 15 years.  In the past we relied on the A and B journals of the Western academy for publication of our work.  However, as Dr Antje Deckert's recent research has demonstrated, these so-called 'top shelf' journals rarely publish Indigenous-centred, critical work that privilege the experiences of Indigenous peoples.  It is obvious that we are increasingly turning to Indigenous journals to publish our work, such as the New Zealand-based journals Mai Review and AlterNative, the African Journal of Criminal Justice, and North American based publications such as International Indigenous Policy Journal and Indigenous Policy Journal.  There is a definite trend in the increase of critical Indigenous justice scholarship, namely that we are increasingly turning away from the journals of the Western academy, and choosing to publish in our own.

There are a number of projects on the go for 2014 and out-years that are designed to support the increase in activity in the area of critical Indigenous justice studies, including:

Publication of a Special Edition on Counter-Colonial Criminologies and Indigenous Perspectives
As stated in an earlier blog, a special edition on 'Counter Colonial Perspectives on Indigenous Justice' is currently being developed for publication in the African Journal of Criminology and Justice Studies. Right now, Dr Antje Deckert, my co-guest editor and I are in the process of completing the peer review process.  We hope to have the edition formally published in the next few months.  The contributors to the special edition include:
Professor Biko Agozino - Virginia Tech
Dr Tamari Kitossa - Brock University
Dr Andrea Smith - University of California
Associate Professor Tracey McIntosh - University of Auckland
Dr Robert Webb - University of Auckland
Dr Antje Deckert - AUT University
Juan Tauri - University of Wollongong
Professor Harry Blagg - University of Western Australia
Dr Thalia Anthony - University of Technology Sydney
Dr Wenona Victor - University of Fraser Valley
Joey Lywak - University of Winnipeg.

Dr Deckert and I are extremely grateful to Professor Biko Agozino for organising the transfer of the special edition to the AJCJS.  We can think of no better home for critical Indigenous/non-Indigenous scholarship like this.

The International Journal of Indigenous Justice (IJIJ)
Given the experiences of myself and other contributors to the above special edition, we have decided to develop a new journal, tentatively titled The International Journal of Indigenous Justice.  We have found a home for the journal at the University of Wollongong (Australia).  A big thanks to Associate Professor Evan Poata-Smith for making this happen.  The new journal will focus on publishing critical commentaries on the Indigenous experience of criminal justice.  Professor Poata-Smith, Dr Robert Webb, Dr Antje Deckert and I will be developing the journal throughout 2014, with a view to launching the first edition in 2015.  Watch this space for further information.

An International Conference on Aboriginal and Maori Social Science
Lastly, Assoc. Professor Evan Poata-Smith and I are currently organising a conference on Aboriginal and Maori social science, to be held at the University of Wollongong in late 2016.  Further information on the conference will be made available through this blog and my Face Book page Indigenous Criminologists, over the coming months.


Juan Tauri

No comments:

Post a Comment