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Avalos, Natalie M Assistant Professor

Positions

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Research

research overview

  • Dr. Avalos is as an Assistant Professor in the of Ethnic Studies Department at the University of Colorado Boulder. She received her doctorate from the University of California at Santa Barbara in Religious Studies with a special focus on Native American and Indigenous Religious Traditions and Tibetan Buddhism. She is an ethnographer of religion whose research and teaching focus on Native American and Indigenous religions in diaspora, healing historical trauma, and decolonization. Her work explores urban Indian and Tibetan refugee religious life as decolonial praxis. She is currently working on her manuscript titled The Metaphysics of Decoloniality: Transnational Indigeneities and Religious Refusal. It argues that the reassertion of land-based logics among Native and Tibetan peoples not only de-centers settler colonial claims to legitimate knowledge but also articulates forms of sovereignty rooted in interdependent relations of power among all persons, human and other-than human.

keywords

  • Coloniality, Decolonization, Urban Indians, Historical Trauma, Decolonial Healing, Indigenous Stewardship, Transnationalism

Publications

Teaching

courses taught

  • ETHN 2001 - Foundations of Comparative Ethnic Studies: Race, Gender and Culture(s)
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2020
    Introduction to the study of race, ethnicity and gender in the United States. Overview of concepts, theories and analytic frames that shape the interdisciplinary field of Ethnic Studies. Focuses on historic, institutional, legal and cultural issues that impact African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Chicanas and Chicanos, European Americans, Native Americans and Indigenous peoples in the U.S.
  • ETHN 2703 - American Indian Religious Traditions
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2021
    Introduces religions of the peoples indigenous to the Americas. Concerns include ritual, mythology and symbolism occurring throughout these cultures in such areas as art, architecture, cosmology, shamanism, sustenance modes, trade and history. Same as RLST 2700.
  • ETHN 6101 - Topics: Specialized Comparative Studies
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2021
    Focuses on a variety of advanced interdisciplinary studies. Themes include: Race and Sports, Critical Whiteness Studies, Race and Masculinity, Applied Community Engagement, Black Women in the Diaspora, US/Mexico Border Cultures, Criminalization and Latinas/os, Race, Violence and Film, and Cuba and Tourism. May be repeated up to 6 total credit hours. Recommended requisite: ETHN coursework.
  • ETHN 6103 - Indigenous Thought and Theory: Foundations in NAIS
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2019
    Introduces the theoretical landscapes of Native American and Indigenous Studies. Explores debates, methodologies and concerns that ground the field and provides critical engagement with Indigenous communities and knowledges. Teaches standards for evaluating scholarly sources based on criteria derived from the most outstanding recent scholarship in the field. Requires writing and thinking critically about issues of concern for global indigenous communities.
  • ETHN 6841 - Advanced Directed Readings in Ethnic Studies
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2020
    This is a graduate level directed readings course designed to expand student knowledge in a particular area of concentration with a broad interdisciplinary and comparative framework. These areas of concentration include work in Africana, American Indian, Asian American, Chicana and Chicano and Transnational/Hemispheric ethnic studies. May be repeated up to 6 total credit hours.
  • RLST 2700 - American Indian Religious Traditions
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2021
    Introduces religions of the peoples indigenous to the Americas. Concerns include ritual, mythology and symbolism occurring throughout these cultures in such areas as art, architecture, cosmology, shamanism, sustenance modes, trade and history. Same as ETHN 2703.

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