Decolonizing Research

Indigenous Storywork as Methodology

Edited by Jo-Ann Archibald, Jenny Lee-Morgan and Jason De Santolo
With a Foreword by Linda Tuhiwai Smith


A landmark exploration from indigenous scholars and activists into how indigenous storytelling practices can decolonize the research of indigenous societies.

From Oceania to North America, indigenous peoples have created storytelling traditions of incredible depth and diversity. The term ‘indigenous storywork’ has come to encompass the sheer breadth of ways in which indigenous storytelling serves as a historical record, as a form of teaching and learning, and as an expression of indigenous culture and identity. But such traditions have too often been relegated to the realm of myth and legend, recorded as fragmented distortions, or erased altogether.

Decolonizing Research brings together indigenous researchers and activists from Canada, Australia and New Zealand to assert the unique value of indigenous storywork as a focus of research, and to develop methodologies that rectify the colonial attitudes inherent in much past and current scholarship. By bringing together their own indigenous perspectives, and by treating indigenous storywork on its own terms, the contributors illuminate valuable new avenues for research, and show how such reworked scholarship can contribute to the movement for indigenous rights and self-determination.

Author Bio

Jo-ann Archibald (Q’um Q’um Xiiem) is scholar and educational practitioner from the Sto:lo and St’at’imc First Nations in British Columbia, Canada. She is professor emeritus in the Educational Studies Department at the UBC Faculty of Education. She was previously the Associate Dean of Indigenous Education, and the Director of NITEP (UBC’s Indigenous Teacher Education Program). She is the author of Indigenous Storywork: Educating the Heart, Mind, Body, and Spirit (2008).

Jenny Bol Jun Lee-Morgan is a Māori scholar and educational practitioner. Her tribal affiliations are to Ngāti Mahuta, Waikato-Tainui. She is a Professor of Māori Research, and Director of Ngā Wai ā te Tui Māori and Indigenous Research, Unitec Institute of Technology, New Zealand. She previously served as deputy director of the Kotahi Research Institute, The University, and as the head of the School of Māori Education (Te Puna Wānanga), The University of Auckland. Her previous works include: co-edited book Decolonisation in Aotearoa: Education, research and practice (Hutchings & Lee-Morgan, 2016) that won Te Kōrero Pono in the Ngā Kupu Ora Aotearoa Māori Book Awards 2017; Oho ake: Rehu Marae (Lee & Selwyn, 2010); and Jade Taniwha: Maori-Chinese Identity and Schooling in Aotearoa (2007).

Dr Jason De Santolo is a researcher & creative producer. His tribal affiliations are Garrwa and Barunggam. He is Assoc Professor of Indigenous Research in the School of Design at University of Technology Sydney and an Associate in the Institute for Sustainable Futures. He previously worked as a Senior Researcher in Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research where he led New Media and the Indigenous Research Synergies strategy. Jason co-edited Decolonizing Research: Indigenous storywork as methodology (2019) with Jo-Ann Archibald and Jenny Lee-Morgan (Zed Books). His latest documentary Warburdar Bununu/Water Shield (2019) explores water contamination in his homelands and Borroloola, Northern Territory and will be premiering at the Sydney Film Festival.

Table of Contents

  • Part I: Aotearoa NZ
    • 1. Pūrākau: From the Inside Out - Jenny Lee-Morgan
    • 2. Within the Womb of our Ancestor: Restoring and Restorying our Ancestral Lnowledges through Wānanga - Naomi Simmonds
    • 3. Naming our Names and Telling our Stories - Joeliee Seed-Pihama
    • 4. Pūrākau as Method: Storying Gender in Māori Worlds - Hayley Marama Cavino
    • 5. Indigenous Storywork and Law: Exploring Māori Legal Traditions - Carwyn Jones
    • 6. Whānau Storytelling as a Decolonial Research Method - Leonie Pihama
  • Part II: Australia
    • 7. Yanyba Jarngkurr, Kingkalli: Song Tradition Renewal and Story-World Enactments of Sustainable Autonomy - Jason De Santolo, Gadrian Hoosan, Bruce King
    • 8. Indigenous Story-Telling: Decolonising Institutions and Assertive Self-Determination and implications for Legal Practice - Larissa Behrendt
    • 9. Designing a Sovereign Storytelling Model - Dr Romaine Moreton
    • 10. Fire Country: A Storied Journey into the Revitalising of Ancient Fire Knowledge Practices - Victor Steffensen
    • 11. Lilyology as a Transformative Framework for Decolonising Ethical Spaces within the Academy - Nerida Blair
    • 12. Storywork in Storytelling: Indigenous Knowledges as Literary Theory - Evelyn Araluen Corr
  • Part III: Canada
    • 13. Indigenous Storywork: Past, Present, and Future - Jo-ann Archibald Q’um Q’um Xiiem
    • 14. Indigenous Visual Storywork for Indigenous Film Aesthetics - Dorothy Christian
    • 15. Using the Indigenous Storywork Principles to Guide Ethical Practices in Research - Sara Florence Davidson
    • 16. Leq’7es te Stsptekwll: Our Memories Long Ago - Georgina Martin and Elder Jean William
    • 17. Indigenous Storywork, Mathematics Education, and Community-Based Research - Cynthia Nicol, Joanne Yovanovich, Jo-ann Archibald


Publication Date: 15 May 2019
304 pages

Product ISBNs: Paperback: 9781786994608
Hardback: 9781786994615
eBook ePub: 9781786994639
eBook PDF: 9781786994622
eBook Kindle: 9781786994646

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