Institute for Indigenous Studies

McGill announced on November 27, 2021 that Gerald Rimer, BCom ’56, and his three sons, Daniel, David, and Neil Rimer, made a $13-million donation to the university that will go toward renovating the Leacock building and creating a new Institute for Indigenous Research and Knowledge (IIRK). (McGill Tribune)

The IIRK will include an Indigenous Language Reclamation and Revitalization Lab that will support Indigenous students, faculty and community members in order to help preserve and grow Indigenous languages and cultures. Plans for the future Institute also include language labs, training and on-site knowledge keepers, as well as events and symposia, among other initiatives. (McGill Tribune)

Watch the Rimer gift announcement here.

Institute for Indigenous Studies Commitee

Yann Allard-Tremblay obtained his PhD in philosophy from the universities of St Andrews and Stirling. He previously held postdoctoral research fellowships at the Centre for Research in Ethics of the University of Montréal and at the McGill Research Group on Constitutional Studies. Professor Allard-Tremblay is a member of the Huron-Wendat First Nation. His current research in political theory is focused on the decolonization and Indigenization of political theory. More specifically, he is interested in investigating ways in which existing mainstream concepts and methods in political theory may silence and distorts the thoughts and claims of Indigenous peoples. Professor Allard-Tremblay is also interested in investigating ways in which the political thoughts and claims of Indigenous peoples offer alternative ways to think about, and transform, political conduct and political concepts. His earlier research was concerned with epistemic theories of democracy. The current focus of his research is the result of a progressive turn to political pluralism.

Jessica Coon is a Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Canada Research Chair in Syntax and Indigenous Languages. Her research is focused on variation across human languages, specifically in the domains of syntax (sentence structure) and morphology (word structure). The bigger questions driving her research are: what are the ways that human languages can differ from one another? what are the ways in which they cannot? and what does this tell us about the human capacity for language? To answer these questions, she has worked extensively with Mayan languages in southern Mexico and Guatemala, as well as with Mi’gmaq, an Algonquian language of eastern Canada. In addition to theoretical work, she has worked to build collaborations with the communities of speakers who are working to document, promote, and revitalize these languages. Here at McGill she co-leads the Montreal Underdocumented Languages Linguistics Lab (MULL-Lab), a venue for students and other local researchers to meet to discuss topics and ongoing projects related to research on underdocumented languages.
Hudson Meadwell, Director, ISCEI is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at McGill University. He has written in the general areas of comparative politics, European political development, political methodology, and philosophy of social science.
Andrea Pinkney: I discovered my interests in both religious studies and South Asian civilisation as an undergraduate at McGill in the Faculty of Religious Studies (B.A., Joint Honours). As a Commonwealth scholar, I then pursued postgraduate studies in Hindi language and literature (Banaras Hindu University, Adv. Diploma in Hindi) and in South Asian Religions (M.A., University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, Ph.D., Columbia University). Prior to joining McGill, I taught in India (Antioch College, Bodhgaya; SIT, Jaipur), and Singapore (National University of Singapore); my research languages are Hindi-Urdu and Sanskrit.
Leslie Sabiston (Red River Métis) is from Aswahonanihk (Selkirk), Manitoba. Working at the intersections of political, legal, and medical anthropologies, as well as Indigenous Studies, Les’ work brings together critical social theories of colonialism, race, class, gender and sexuality with the political commitments of decolonization and aspirations of realizing alternative liberatory worlds informed by Indigenous futurities. A guiding principle to his academic work has been to develop a more robust understanding of the ongoing process of encounter with Indigenous peoples in Canada, that is, how the state and its populace interact with and understand themselves in relation to the original peoples of this land.
Christa Scholtz is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at McGill University. She is the Academic Program Director of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada. She was born and raised in Treaty 6 territory (Edmonton, Alberta). She earned her Bachelor’s degree in social sciences at Faculté Saint Jean, of the University of Alberta. She holds a Masters of Arts from University of Ottawa, and a PhD from Princeton University. She researches and teaches in the areas of Settler-Indigenous politics and policy, comparative and Canadian politics, constitutionalism, and federalism. She has authored a book, titled Negotiating Claims: The Emergence of Indigenous Land Claim Negotiation Policies in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States (Routledge, 2006). More recently her work has appeared in the Canadian Journal of Political Science, the Canadian Journal of Law and Society, and the University of Toronto Law Journal.
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