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Indigenous Enslavement and Incarceration in North American History

Gilder Lehrman Center's 15th Annual International Conference
November 15-16, 2013

Luce Hall Auditorium, 34 Hillhouse Avenue
Yale University
New Haven, Connecticut


Studies of indigenous slavery have multiplied in the past decade, changing not only the ways we think about slavery, but also race, citizenship, and nation. This conference intends to bring together some of this exciting new work and to trace its effects on and within Native American communities. It does so self-consciously in its expressed focus on slavery and incarceration. Such an emphasis, we hope, connects new slavery scholarship done in early American history with contemporary investigations into incarceration and prison studies.

Video of conference panels are going online. The following panels are currently available:

Welcome and Keynote
Justice Murray Sinclair's Powerpoint Presentation and Video
Native Northeast and the Algonquian Diaspora
Indigenous Slavery in the American South
Disciplinary Paternalism
Native Activism and Incarceration
Concluding Roundtable: New Directions in the Field


Conference Participants

Biographical Information


  • The Honorable Justice Murray Sinclair, Chair, Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada
  • Ned Blackhawk, Yale University
  • David W. Blight, Yale University
  • Lisa Brooks, Amherst College
  • Christine DeLucia, Mount Holyoke College
  • Alejandra Dubcovsky, Yale University
  • Robbie Ethridge, University of Mississippi
  • John Mack Faragher, Yale University
  • Joseph Gone, University of Michigan
  • Margaret Jacobs, University of Nebraska
  • Tsianina Lomawaima, University of Arizona
  • Kevin McBride, Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center
  • Tiya Miles, University of Michigan
  • Melinda Miller, United States Naval Academy
  • Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture
  • Beth Piatote, University of California-Berkeley
  • Rachel Purvis, Yale University
  • Debbie Reese, American Indians in Children's Literature
  • Luana Ross, University of Washington
  • Howard Sapers, Correctional Investigator for Canada
  • Theodore Van Alst, Yale University
  • Jace Weaver, University of Georgia
  • Fay Yarbrough, Rice University
  • Melissa Tantaquidgeon Zobel, The Mohegan Tribe


Banner images (left to right): "Prisoners take to Fort Marion, St. Augustine, Florida, 1875," Richard Pratt Papers, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library; Catlin, George. Illustrations of the Manners, Customs, and Condition of the North American Indians. 7th Edition (1848),"Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library; "Alcatraz," Art Kane, photographer, courtesy Art Kane Archive, www.artkane.com.