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INconversation with Robin Wall Kimmerer

Hosted by Indiana Humanities

Join us Tuesday, June 14 for a conversation with award-winning author and scientist Robin Wall Kimmerer at the Eiteljorg Museum.

RSVP
June 14
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm EDT
Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art
500 W. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204
Free

Event Details

In Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants, author and scientist Robin Wall Kimmerer says, “For all of us, becoming Indigenous to a place means living as if your children’s future mattered, to take care of the land as if our lives, both material and spiritual, depended on it.” In her writings, Kimmerer brings both her scientific knowledge as botanist and indigenous wisdom as an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation to ask and answer questions about our relationships with the more-than-human world. Through these lenses, she asks readers to envision a more reciprocal relationship with the earth, grounded in listening and learning from the plants that surround us.

Offered as part of Indiana Humanities’ Unearthed programming, a multiyear initiative encouraging Hoosiers to discover and discuss their relationships with the natural world, this special INconversation with Robin Wall Kimmerer will feature a reading followed by a moderated conversation with Felica Ahasteen-Bryant, Director of Purdue University’s Native American Educational and Cultural Center. The evening will wrap up with an audience Q&A and book signing opportunity. This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.

This program is presented by Natalie Clayton, co-founder & broker, Maywright Property Co. Support has also been provided by Eiteljorg Museum and the Religion, Spirituality, and the Arts Program of the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute.

ASL interpretation will be provided.

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SCHEDULE (All times Eastern.)

6:30 p.m. – Doors open

7:00 – 8:00 p.m. – INconversation with Robin Wall Kimmerer moderated by Felica Ahasteen-Bryant

8:00 – 8:30 p.m. – Book sales and signing

This program will also be available to view via livestream. If you are unable to join in-person, but would like to receive the livestream link in your inbox when the event begins, click here to provide your email address.

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About Robin Will Kimmerer Robin Wall Kimmerer is a mother, scientist, decorated professor, and enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. She is the author of Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants, which has earned Kimmerer wide acclaim. Her first book, Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses, was awarded the John Burroughs Medal for outstanding nature writing, and her other work has appeared in Orion, Whole Terrain, and numerous scientific journals. She tours widely and has been featured on NPR’s On Being with Krista Tippett and in 2015 addressed the general assembly of the United Nations on the topic of “Healing Our Relationship with Nature.” Kimmerer lives in Syracuse, New York, where she is a SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor of Environmental Biology, and the founder and director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment, whose mission is to create programs which draw on the wisdom of both Indigenous and scientific knowledge for our shared goals of sustainability.

As a writer and a scientist, her interests in restoration include not only restoration of ecological communities, but restoration of our relationships to land. She holds a BS in Botany from SUNY ESF, an MS and PhD in botany from the University of Wisconsin, and is the author of numerous scientific papers on plant ecology, bryophyte ecology, traditional knowledge, and restoration ecology. She lives on an old farm in upstate New York, tending gardens both cultivated and wild.

About Felica Ahasteen-Bryant Felica Ahasteen-Bryant is the Director of Purdue University’s Native American Educational and Cultural Center. She has worked in the field of education for over 20 years with emphasis in student engagement and leadership, diversity and inclusion initiatives, and recruitment and retention of students.

Since 2009, Ahasteen-Bryant provides leadership for campus-wide Native American initiatives at the NAECC and she works collaboratively to mentor students and foster an inclusive learning environment. Ahasteen-Bryant serves as co-Principal Investigator (PI) for the Sloan Indigenous Graduate Partnership (SIGP) program and mentors Indigenous students. She was the recipient of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) national award, “Chapter Advisor of the Year” at the AISES 2013 National Conference and the “Outstanding Advisor of the Year” from the Purdue Office of the Dean of Students in 2015.

Ahasteen-Bryant has elevated the visibility of Native American initiatives through her community advocacy and engagement. She has held leadership positions with the American Indian Theatre Company of Indiana, the American Indian Center of Indiana, and served on committees with the Eiteljorg Museum and United Way of Central Indiana. In January 2019, Ahasteen-Bryant was appointed by Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb to serve as a Commissioner with the Indiana Native American Indian Affairs Commission (INAIAC) and currently chairs the INAIAC Education Committee.

As a member of the Navajo (Diné) Nation, Ahasteen-Bryant was born and raised in New Mexico and she is from the Bear People, Towering House, Bitter Water, and Tobacco People clans. She received her bachelor’s degree from New Mexico State University and master’s degree from Indiana University.

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About INconversation INconversation engages an intimate group in interesting and insightful conversations with some of the nation’s most intriguing thought-leaders. This highly participatory question-and-answer style discussion involves the thought leader, a moderator and the audience. INconversation is a signature program of Indiana Humanities.

About Unearthed Unearthed is a multiyear thematic initiative from Indiana Humanities that encourages Hoosiers to discover and discuss their relationships with the natural world. Through engaging speakers, a statewide read, a tour of the Smithsonian’s Water/Ways exhibit, Campfires treks, a film series, a podcast and more, Hoosiers will explore how we shape the environment and how the environment shapes us.

About Indiana Humanities Indiana Humanities connects people, opens minds and enriches lives by creating and facilitating programs that encourage Hoosiers to think, read and talk. www.IndianaHumanities.org

About the Eiteljorg Museum Indianapolis businessman and philanthropist Harrison Eiteljorg and other civic leaders founded the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art. From the museum’s opening in 1989, its mission has been to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the art, history, and cultures of the American West and the Indigenous peoples of North America. The Eiteljorg collects, conserves and exhibits outstanding Western art and Native American art and cultural objects. The Eiteljorg Museum is the only museum of its kind in the Midwest, and one of only two museums east of the Mississippi that explore both Native America and the American West. www.eiteljorg.org

About IUPUI’s Religion Spirituality and the Arts The Religion, Spirituality, and the Arts (RSA) is a program of the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute that brings together artists, religious leaders, religious communities, humanities experts, and a broad range of publics from diverse backgrounds and disciplinary perspectives for sustained study, analysis, and discussion of religious texts in a classroom environment. Directed by Rabbi Sandy Sasso, these textual discussions, which explore the varieties of religious experience and understanding, provide the inspiration for creating new artistic works (e.g. music, poetry, fiction, drama, visual art, dance). Artists share their creations through exhibitions and presentations to members of the Central Indiana community, including religious organizations, congregations, schools, libraries, and community groups.

RSA programming fosters a respectful and stimulating environment designed to nurture creativity. With a world class faculty from across the disciplines, RSA invites students from a broad range of artistic practices and diverse experiences. RSA programming is offered in partnership with Christian Theological Seminary and the Jewish Community Center of Indianapolis. https://www.culturalecologies.org/rsa

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ASL interpretation services will be available. If you need further accommodations, or have questions about accessibility, please contact Megan Telligman, director of programs, at mtelligman@indianahumanities.org.

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