Sarah Hunt / Tłaliłila’ogwa

Sarah Hunt  / Tłaliłila’ogwa
Assistant Professor & Canada Research Chair, Indigenous Political Ecology
Environmental Studies
Office: DTB A133

PhD (Geography) 2014, Simon Fraser University

Area of expertise

Indigenous political ecologies, Indigenous methodologies and methods, coastal ontologies and epistemologies, legal geographies of settler colonialism, Indigenous gender and sexuality, unsettling and decolonizing relations.

Sarah’s research and teaching center on the political relationalities of coastal peoples; Indigenous justice and self-determination; and Indigenous, decolonial and community-based approaches to research. As an activist-scholar with a long history of collaborating with Indigenous communities, particularly youth, women and 2SQ people, Sarah is committed to centering diverse knowledges that do not fit neatly into disciplinary frames. In this sense her work in Indigenous political ecology is un-disciplined rather than being inter- or trans-disciplinary.

Sarah is Kwakwaka’wakw – Kwagu’ł through her paternal grandfather Chief Henry Hunt, and Dzawada’enuxw through her grandmother Helen Hunt (Nelson) – and is also Ukrainian and English through her maternal grandparents. She has spent most of her life as a guest in Lekwungen territories. Prior to joining UVic, Sarah was an Assistant Professor at UBC for five years in the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies and Department of Geography.

Building on more than two decades of work on justice, violence, gender, health, and self-determination, Sarah’s current SSHRC-funded research seeks to create new understandings of justice across the nested scales of lands/waters, homes and bodies via engagement of coastal peoples’ embodied knowledge and land-based cultural practice. Indigenous scholars, activists and communities have advanced a deep interrelation between the governance of Indigenous lands and bodies, calling for research into questions of justice that pushes beyond colonial framings to account for these interconnected scales of life. Collaboratively, Sarah is working on a number of initiatives seeking to advance the restoration of Indigenous peoples’ jurisdiction over their lands and lives, with particular focus on the upholding the authority of coastal women.

Sarah has published upwards of 40 journal articles, reports, and book chapters. Her writing has been published in journals such as Geography CompassAtlantis, The Professional Geographer, and Cultural Geographies, and recently authored or co-authored reports include Access to Justice for Indigenous Adult Victims of Sexual Assault (with Patricia Barkaskas), An Introduction to the Health of Two-Spirit People, and Indigenous Communities and Family Violence: Changing the Conversation (with Cindy Holmes). Her writing can be found in anthologies such as Indigenous Research: Theories, Practices and Relationships; Keetsahnak: Our Missing and Murdered Indigenous Sisters; Determinants of Indigenous Peoples’ Health in Canada, and; The Winter We Danced: Voices from the Past, the Future, and the Idle No More Movement. Sarah is currently on the editorial board of BC Studies and the advisory board of Gateways: International journal of community research and engagement.

In 2014, Sarah was awarded a Governor General’s Gold Medal for her doctoral dissertation and was the 2017 recipient of the Glenda Laws Award for Social Justice from the American Association of Geographers in recognition of her social justice contributions.