American Indian and Indigenous Studies/Open Rank Professor

The Department of American Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill invites applications for an open rank position in American Indian and Indigenous Studies. This position aims to build upon ties to the Native peoples of present-day North Carolina through research and teaching focused on Native peoples located in North Carolina today or on nations with ties to the land within what is now North Carolina. We seek a visionary scholar whose research, teaching, and service centers Indigeneity, the region’s deep and complex history, and the enduring presence of Indigenous spaces and localities. The department embraces a capacious definition of scholarship and welcomes applicants from traditional disciplines as well as emerging fields of inter- and transdisciplinary exploration. We are particularly interested in engaged scholars with a demonstrated record of accomplishment in contributing to critical conversations in the academy, producing public-facing work, and collaborating with Indigenous communities. 

This search completes a four-position cluster hire inaugurated in 2022 in coordination with the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences’ s formation of a Working Group to seriously explore the development of an independent Curriculum in Global Indigeneity and American Indian Studies. To learn more about Global Indigeneity and American Indian Studies at UNC, click here

Selected candidates will contribute to our ongoing process of reimagining scholarly, curricular, and community engagement around Native North America and Global Indigeneity in the College of Arts and Sciences. In addition, the successful candidate will pursue a robust research agenda, teach and mentor undergraduate and graduate students, and serve on undergraduate Honors, master’s thesis, and doctoral dissertation committees. The Department of American Studies is currently the home for an undergraduate major concentration and minor in American Indian and Indigenous Studies, and American Indian and Indigenous Studies and Southern Studies are both counted as signature strengths of our Ph.D. program. To learn more, visit us at our website

UNC-Chapel Hill is the largest public university in a state with the second largest Native American population east of the Mississippi River, including the Coharie Indian Tribe, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Haliwa-Saponi Indian Tribe, Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, Meherrin Indian Tribe, Occaneechi Band of Saponi Nation, Sappony, and Waccamaw Siouan Tribe, as well as several urban and regional organizations. The campus has a robust set of resources supporting Native peoples, including the American Indian Center, the Carolina Indian Circle for undergraduates, and The First Nations Graduate Circle. Library holdings at UNC are among the finest in the world for the study of the Native South and are growing; they include the Southern Historical Collection, the Southern Folklife Collection, and such digital projects as Documenting the American South. The successful candidate will also have opportunities to cultivate collaborative relationships with other academic departments and units such as the Sonja Hayes Stone Center for Black Culture and History, the Carolina Latinx Center, and the Asian American Center, as well as the Institute for the Study of the Americas, Center for the Study of the American South, Ackland Art Museum, Digital Innovation Lab, Research Laboratories of Archaeology, and the Critical Game Studies Initiative within the Digital Literacy and Communications Lab, among other local and regional institutions. 

The American Studies department is home to undergraduate programs in American Studies and in American Indian and Indigenous Studies, as well as a doctoral program in American Studies and a master’s degree in Folklore. Our American Studies programs encourage undergraduates to explore the complex, variable, and contested nature of what it means to be American through coursework, fieldwork, and critical and creative projects. Students in American Indian and Indigenous Studies develop an acute understanding of issues involving Indigeneity, colonialism, cross-cultural interaction, diversity, globalization, art, politics, and social justice. Our students graduate with a comprehension of the dynamics of American culture that prepares them to make a responsible and critical difference in a wide range of professions. Our faculty is a vibrant and committed group of scholars with a wide range of disciplinary expertise and interests that span global, temporal, and local concerns. Our department and faculty collaborate with multiple units on campus, including the Center for the Study of the American South, the Southern Oral History Program, the Southern Historical Collection at Wilson Library, Carolina Performing Arts, the Ackland Art Museum, and the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University. 

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is the flagship institution of a state university system comprising 17 campuses across North Carolina. It is situated in the Research Triangle, an area anchored by the town of Chapel Hill and the cities of Durham and Raleigh, which are home to vibrant intellectual communities at our neighbor institutions, such as Duke University, North Carolina Central University (an HBCU), and North Carolina State University.

The Department of American Studies is committed to a vision of the University where all members of the community feel welcome, valued, and can thrive.

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