Decolonizing Wellness: Indigenous Food, Thought, & Practice

October 12, 2016
A week-long residency with Laticia McNaughton will explore issues of sovereignty, revitalization of culture, traditional diet and language, and more.

Wells College welcomes Laticia McNaughton, a graduate student in the SUNY Buffalo American Studies Department, for a week-long residency based around the theme "Decolonizing Wellness: Indigenous Food, Thought, and Practice." From October 17 to 21, Laticia will hold public lectures, workshops, discussion circles, class visits, and a potluck dinner to close out the week and commemorate the experience. See the schedule below.

Laticia McNaughton's dissertation work is both academic and practical. Her work investigating Haudenosaunee historical and contemporary foodways caused her to create and participate in several practical efforts to decolonize and indigenize her diet and the diet of others. Ms. McNaughton was brought to this topic when she, like many Natives in the US, was diagnosed with diabetes. For her, this work is about the physical and cultural survival of herself and many others.   

McNaughton’s academic work draws from Native studies, Food Studies, and Gender studies to discuss issues of sovereignty, revitalization of culture, traditional diet and language, the analysis of artwork as a research method, and women’s roles in influencing peace and war through preparing and serving food. Through her personal food journey she conducts cooking classes and workshops, participates in cooking contests, blogs, acts as a clearing house for recipes and stories of food and nutrition, exercises and manages her eating to manage her health, and learns and promotes Mohawk language.  She also represents food as a published food photographer. 

Residency Schedule:

Monday, October 17

12:20 – 1:20 p.m. Sustainability Perspectives Series & Talk Circle
Sustenance and Sustainability: a personal reflection on food, wellness, and sustainability. De Witt Lecture Hall (106), Zabriskie Hall. Lunch will be provided.

1:30 – 4:20 p.m. Class Visit
PSY 280 The Psychology of Art: artistic representations of Haudenosaunee food practices including Laticia's photography.

7 – 9 p.m. Lecture
Eating Good Food for a Good Mind: the Personal Politics of Eating. Hostetter Lecture Room (209), Stratton Hall.

Tuesday, October 18

9:25 – 10:40 a.m. Class Visit
ANTH 270 Anthropology of Food: discussion about Haudenosaunee food history and sovereignty.

1:30 – 4:20 p.m. Class Visit
PSY 330 Indigenous Psychologies and WGS Body Politics: discussion of previous night’s lecture.

7 – 9 p.m. Lecture
Recipes of Peace: Considering Jikonsaseh and the Power of Haudenosaunee Women’s Food-Seed Responsibilities. Hostetter Lecture Room (209), Stratton Hall.

Wednesday, October 19

12:30 – 2 p.m. Workshop
Workshop on food preservation (place to be determined)  

7 – 9 p.m. Lecture
Haudenosaunee Food Imagery and Art. De Witt Lecture Hall (106), Zabriskie Hall

Thursday, October 20

10:50 a.m. – 12:05 p.m. Class Visit
PSY 349 Cognition and Culture: Mohawk language immersion, thought and philosophy.

7 – 8 p.m. Talk Circle
A discussion about the relationship between academics and passion. How does Laticia promote her passion through the academy and digital storytelling, and how might we do the same? Zabriskie Hall 105.

Friday, October 21

9:25 – 10:40 a.m. Class Visit
SOC 277 Social Inequalities: discussion on the relationship between poverty, diet and health with emphasis on Native Americans.

12 – 2 p.m. Talk Circle
Workshop on Indigenous Research Methods. Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall.

5 – 7 p.m. Potluck Dinner
Students and interested faculty and staff will be invited to cook together for a potluck celebration, breaking into groups and then bringing the food back to share.  Art Exhibit Room, Macmillan Hall.

NOTE: All class visits will be open to the Wells community. For more information, contact Laura McClusky, Professor of Sociology and Anthropology.

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