The Ongoing American Genocide Against Indigenous Women And Girls
Canada issued a report two weeks ago on thousands of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) calling them victims of Canadian Genocide and connecting a root cause to colonization, racism, and sexism. This report came after decades of pressure by families of the victims and validates what indigenous communities have been reporting as a major problem. We speak with Annita Lucchesi (Cheyenne), a founder of the MMIW Database, who organizes to track these cases, raise their visibility and change policy throughout the Americas. She recently started the Sovereign Bodies Institute. as a home for the database. Lucchesi discusses what it will take to protect indigenous women and girls and how everyone can play a role in this movement.
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Annita Lucchesi is Executive Director of Sovereign Bodies Institute, a research institute dedicated to community-engaged research on gender and sexual violence against Indigenous people. Sovereign Bodies Institute (SBI) builds on Indigenous traditions of data gathering and knowledge transfer to create, disseminate, and put into action research on gender and sexual violence against Indigenous people. For more information on SBI, please visit their website, at sovereign-bodies.org.
Annita is also a doctoral student at the University of Lethbridge, in the Cultural, Social, & Political Thought program. She earned her BA in Geography, with a minor in Global Poverty & Practice, from the University of California, Berkeley in 2012, and graduated with highest honors. She graduated Washington State University with her MA in American Studies in 2016. Her research interests include indigenous and critical cartography, indigenous feminisms, postcolonial geographies, and indigenous research methodologies. Her dissertation work brings critical indigenous cartography and feminist studies together, by examining the ways in which maps can help us to better understand the international issue of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls, and the movement to honor them and bring them to safety. As part of this work, Annita maintains one of the largest databases of cases of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls in Canada and the United States. This data is used not only in her own work, but is also made available to tribal advocates, activists, policy makers, service providers, and community leaders.
Annita is a Southern Cheyenne descendant, and her ancestors traditionally made their home in northeastern Colorado and southern Wyoming. Her Indian name is Hetoevėhotohke’e, which translates to Evening Star Woman.