Examining the Feminist Political Economy of Indigenous Food Sovereignty in the Northwest Territories, Canada
Food sovereignty is peoples’ right to ecologically and sustainably produced food and the right to define their own food systems. Despite increasing usage of the term in scholarly literature, the “sovereignty” in “food sovereignty” is still under-theorized, especially within indigenous food sovereignty. Gender and political economy are largely left out of the debate. My research fills this lacuna by exploring the decolonizing mechanisms of food sovereignty in an indigenous community in Northwest Territories, Canada. I also turn to feminist political economy to understand the roles indigenous women play in regaining traditional knowledge and provisioning in “post-colonial” sustainable food systems. I will conduct in-depth, ethnographic research at the Northern Farm Training Institute in Hay River, Northwest Territories, where the Métis-led farm exists to establish food sovereignty locally and promote indigenous food sovereignty across Territories through their farmer training programs. Funding from the Center for Race and Gender will enable me to conduct field work in Hay River in summer 2019. This work will be followed by archival research and a longer 12-month field season conducting ethnographic interviews and engaged participant-observation.