Collaboration as Decolonization? Methodology as a Framework for Research with Indigenous Peoples
Marlboro Institute for Liberal Arts and Interdisciplinary Studies
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Qualitative and Multi-Method Research
On a bright afternoon in March 2022, Victoria Carlson, the Yurok Language Program Manager for the Yurok Tribe stood in front of Yurok language students at Hoopa Valley High School, on the Hoopa Valley Indian Reservation in far Northern California. As she invited students to take home the informed consent permission forms I distributed through the maze of desks, she told students about how our collaboration started. “I didn’t know what to think of Mneesha at first. You know, there have been a lot of researchers who come to Native communities and don’t do right by us. But she kept coming back year after year and kept asking us what we thought and what we wanted. And now, it is really exciting to see what our research together looks like.” Victoria’s comment, showing rightful skepticism of the outsider replaced over time by mutual appreciation for partnership, stays with me. It is part of the story of how I came to do what I term collaborative methodology, an explicit attempt to decolonize political science research.
Gellman, Mneesha. (2022) “Collaboration as Decolonization?” Qualitative and Multi-Method Research. 20(2), 8-13.
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