LAUNCH: Beyond Recognition: a special edition of Postcolonial Studies

When: Wednesday 20 September, 6-8pm

Where: Institute for Postcolonial Studies, 78-80 Curzon St, North Melbourne, VIC 3051

 (note that IPCS events have a small cover charge: waged $5, unwaged $3, IPCS members free)

The special issue responds to recent critical Indigenous scholarship against the politics of recognition, led by scholars such as Audra Simpson (who has a paper in the issue) and Glen Coulthard. The papers in the issue build on their important critiques, extending these into diverse empirical contexts, including in non-settler postcolonial contexts (Kenya, Papua New Guinea) as well as in settler colonial ones (Australia, US, Canada).

The papers engage variously with: Indigenous refusal and colonial constructions of ‘consent’ in settler colonies (Audra Simpson); slum-upgrading development projects in Kenya (Sam Balaton-Chrimes); the interplay of recognition and assimilation in Indigenous Australian lifeworlds (Melinda Hinkson); the refusal of whiteness by light-skinned Aboriginal people (Emma Kowal and Yin Paradies); memorialisation of the Second World War and of ‘Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels’ in Papua New Guinea (Victoria Stead); visual self-representations of Indigenous people affected by the Canadian Residential School system (Lara Fullenwieder); and the competing normative political frameworks of recognition and justification (Duncan Ivison).

The list of journal contents is below, and we are very happy to provide PDFs of any of these for those who don’t have institutional access to them (email or

For those of you who are in Melbourne, we will be launching the special issue at the Institute for Postcolonial Studies, North Melbourne, on the 20 September. Paul Muldoon (Monash University) will join the issue editors (Victoria Stead and Sam Balaton-Chrimes) in a panel discussion on the politics of recognition, including in relation to current Australian debates over constitutional recognition of Indigenous people. Please join us, if you can, for some good conversation and light refreshments.

Postcolonial Studies

Special Issue, ‘Beyond Recognition’, vol. 20(1) 2017

 1. Samantha Balaton-Chrimes and Victoria Stead, ‘Recognition, Power and Coloniality’

 2. Audra Simpson, ‘The Ruse of Consent and the Anatomy of “Refusal”: Cases from North America and Australia’

 3. Lara Fullenwieder, ‘Framing Indigenous Self-Recognition: The Visual and Cultural Work of the Politics of Recognition’

 4. Samantha Balaton-Chrimes, ‘Recognition, Coloniality and International Development: A Case Study of the Nubians and the Kenya Slum Upgrading Project’

 5. Victoria Stead, ‘Violent Histories and the Ambivalences of Recognition in Postcolonial Papua New Guinea’

 6. Melinda Hinkson, ‘Beyond Assimilation and Refusal: A Warlpiri Perspective on the Politics of Recognition’

 7. Emma Kowal and Yin Paradies, ‘Indigeneity and the Refusal of Whiteness’

 8. Duncan Ivison, ‘Pluralising Political Legitimacy’