[Colloquium] Pueblo (In)visibilities: Language, Secrecy, and Publicity in the Southwest U.S.

Event Date: 

Thursday, April 4, 2019 - 3:30pm to 5:00pm

Event Location: 

  • South Hall 3605

Using linguistic and ethnographic data from two Pueblo communities in New Mexico and Texas, I examine how written and spoken language is used in the formation of subjectivities, groups, and articulations of sovereignty. Beginning by tracing one community's experiment with indigenous language literacy which emphasized the tight control of language materials, I show how a new understanding of the public/private distinction is possible based on concealment practices rather than the unlimited circulation of written works. Using the second example, I show how indigenous language can be used to render a border community visible through collective language activism and individual, embodied uses of Native language.  This work brings linguistic anthropological attention to the ways that secrecy and publicity create, maintain, and challenge identity and community, uniting Indigenous studies and borderlands scholarship.