“Where Bright Thoughts Like Rivers Flow”: Storytelling and Writing With and For the Cherokee Nation

Wednesday, April 5, 2023 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Through a careful weaving of traditional Cherokee stories, Cherokee cultural practices of ᏚᏳᎪᏛ (duyuk’ta; balance), and archival recovery work, this virtual presentation by Emily Legg will illustrate the participatory nature of Indigenous storytelling and the ways this serves as a lived and embodied act that builds and sustains a community of knowledge-makers across time and place. Cherokee storytelling becomes a lens through which to reflect on the writing practices and writing artifacts of nineteenth century Cherokee students at the Cherokee National Seminaries and the ways these ancestors are still teaching us how to navigate the insider/outsider positionings of Indigenous knowledge making and academic scholarship. 

Emily Legg is a Cherokee Nation citizen and an assistant professor of intercultural rhetoric at Miami University in Ohio. Her work centers on Indigenous methodologies of storytelling as a decolonial and materialist research practice in writing and rhetoric, and she brings these methodologies to her historiographic recovery work. Legg develops Indigenous storytelling methodologies and applies Cherokee cultural teachings to archival research on topics such as the Cherokee National Seminaries during the nineteenth century, in order to counter and resist narratives of assimilation.  

Funding for this program was provided through a grant from the Florida Humanities with funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this event do not necessarily represent those of Florida Humanities or the National Endowment for the Humanities. 

Each spring, UCF hosts a large-scale celebration of creativity at Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. This year, UCF Celebrates the Arts explores the intersection of arts and technology, and showcases our students, faculty and alumni through dance, concerts, cabaret, lectures and discussions, film, chamber music, family-friendly events, visual arts and more. The festival has events and exhibits for all ages and interests, and with half of the events being free, is an ideal opportunity to try something new. Fantastic possibilities lie ahead at UCF Celebrates the Arts, April 2-15 at Dr. Phillips Center! Learn more at arts.ucf.edu/celebrates. 

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