Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Angela L. Robinson

Angela L. Robinson, a third-year doctoral student in the Department of Gender Studies at UCLA, analyzes the affective relationship of colonialism and sovereignty in the Pacific Islands with special attention to the role of queer Indigenous performance. Drawing upon work of such feminist Indigenous scholars as Mishuana Goeman, Dian Million, and Teresia Teaiwa, her project locates the production of national settler affect in Hawai'i and New Zealand and extends the materiality of archival evidence to the affective structures of colonial governance that respond to Indigenous movements for self-determination in the Pacific Islands. 

To rethink the common sense of the nation-state, Angela examines performance and ritual as critical sites of intervention that offer potentially radical visions of Indigenous futurity and survivance. In her current work on Maori performance artist Cat Ruka’s Playing Savage (2009), she argues that Ruka aurally and visually challenges the affective residue of colonialism, while gesturing toward alternative practices of Indigenous sovereignty that do not replicate colonial legacies of exclusion, heteronormativity, and the politics of recognition. Angela recently presented her research on Cat Ruka’s Playing Savage at the 2014 American Studies Association conference, and her reviews appear in Journal of Pacific History and American Indian Culture and Research Journal

–Dana M. Linda

Dana M. Linda is a graduate student in the Department of Comparative Literature at UCLA.