Posted By:
Kathy Dye
Kathy Dye
Published On: November 5th, 2021

Free event to be offered virtually on Nov. 10


Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI) will sponsor a lecture on the literary history of the Alaska Native Brotherhood (ANB) and Sisterhood (ANS) as part of a series on Southeast Alaska Native history in honor of Native American Heritage Month.

The talk, A Traditional Literary History of the Alaska Native Brotherhood and Sisterhood: Writing Alaska Native Solidarity into American Modernity, will be given by Michael P. Taylor, Ph.D., assistant professor of English and associate director of American Indian Studies, Brigham Young University.

On November 5, 1912, eleven Alaska Native men and one Alaska Native woman came together to form the ANB. Two years later, eight Alaska Native women organized the ANS. Early on, the brotherhood and sisterhood collaborated to promote Alaska Native solidarity, fight for U.S. citizenship, desegregate public education, ensure economic equality, and protect traditional rights to Alaska Native lands and waters, Taylor wrote.

This presentation turns to the ANB’s monthly newspaper, The Alaska Fisherman (1923–1932), to demonstrate how the ANB/ANS navigated the challenging sociopolitical realities brought on by increased U.S.-settler expansion by adapting longstanding Alaska Native literary traditions. Such literary adaptations were not an abandonment of traditional practices and protocols; rather, The Alaska Fisherman offers a continuation of traditional literary commitments that served to protect and sustain Alaska Native lands and waters into American modernity.

The lecture is scheduled at noon Alaska time, Wednesday, Nov. 10. All lectures will be streamed at 12 pm to the Sealaska Heritage YouTube channel. A live Q&A session will follow the lecture.

About the Lecturer

Michael P. Taylor is an Assistant Professor of English and Associate Director of American Indian Studies at Brigham Young University. He is the current Butler Young Scholar with the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies. His scholarship on Indigenous activism, poetry, and boarding schools has appeared in such journals as American Quarterly, Native American and Indigenous Studies, and Modernism/Modernity. He is the coauthor of Returning Home: Diné Creative Works from the Intermountain Indian School published with University of Arizona Press. His research engages Indigenous archives to expand the literary histories and ongoing resurgent acts of Indigenous communities.

This program is provided under the Preparing Indigenous Teachers and Administrators for Alaska Schools (PITAAS) program and funded by the Alaska Native Education Program.

Sealaska Heritage Institute is a private nonprofit founded in 1980 to perpetuate and enhance Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian cultures of Southeast Alaska. Its goal is to promote cultural diversity and cross-cultural understanding through public services and events. SHI also conducts social scientific and public policy research that promotes Alaska Native arts, cultures, history and education statewide. The institute is governed by a Board of Trustees and guided by a Council of Traditional Scholars, a Native Artist Committee and a Southeast Regional Language Committee.

CONTACT: Kathy Dye, SHI Communications and Publications Deputy Director, 907.321.4636,

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