andrea smith on indigenous sexuality


Andrea Smith, ‘Indigenous Feminists Are Too Sexy for Your Heteropatriarchal Settler Colonialism’, African Journal of Criminology and Justice Studies 8, 1 (2014).

Within the creation myths of the United States, narratives portray Native peoples as hypersexualized and sexually desiring white men and women. Native men in captivity narratives are portrayed as wanting to rape white women and Native women such as Pocahontas are constituted as desiring the love and sexual attention of white men at the expense of her Native community. In either of these accounts of settler colonialism, Native men and women’s sexualities are read as out of control and unable to conform to white heteropatriarchy. Many Native peoples respond to these images by desexualizing our communities and conforming to heteronormativity in an attempt to avoid the violence of settler-colonialism. I interrogate these images and provide sex-positive alternatives for Native nation building as an important means of decolonizing Native America.

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