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CANR DEI Special Presentation: Karelle Hall

On Tuesday, April 4, the CANR DEI Committee hosted guest speaker Karelle Hall as she presented her research, “Sovereignty and Race: Intersections of Nanticoke and Lenape Identities.”

Karelle is a Ph.D. student in the Critical Interventions in Theory and Ethnography program in the anthropology department at Rutgers University. She received her bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College in Anthropology with a minor in Native American Studies. Her dissertation research explores embodied and distributed Indigenous sovereignty in public and performative spaces. 

“My presentation explores how racial identities and categories particularly impact the Nanticoke and Lenape people of Delaware and New Jersey.  Their ongoing efforts to maintain and assert tribal sovereignties are continuously intersected with the politics of race and ever shifting racial categories.” 

Karelle Hall

She has taught cultural and linguistic anthropology classes at Rutgers University and presented her preliminary research at conferences. As a member of the Nanticoke Indian Tribe, she has represented her nation at numerous events as a speaker and dancer. 

She is actively working on Nanticoke language revitalization, including writing a children’s book and developing lessons for community classes. Using her experience and connections in the legal field, she assisted the Nanticoke Tribe with ratifying their recognition in the state of Delaware. She continues to work as an activist and representative for her community, promoting visibility, decolonization and education.

We would like to again extend our sincere thanks to Karelle for coming to campus and sharing her knowledge of Nanticoke and Lenape communities.

We would also like to thank Dr. Pascha Bueno-Hansen and Jon Cox for attending. They shared information about what the UD Anti-Racism Initiative (UDARI) American Indian and Indigenous Relations committee is doing at a university level to help educate the UD community about our history.

Please find more information about the Living Land Acknowledgement at the following website:

A recording of the event can be viewed below.

Additional resources courtesy of Ms. Sarah L. Dobe-Hund, Assistant Director, Academic & Career Integration at UD.

Throughline and Code Switch are two of her favorite regular podcast listens. Code Switch especially has given a lot of book recommendations by minoritized authors, including these:

  • The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline (native YA science fiction)
  • Where the Dead Sit Talking by Brandon Hobson (Cherokee)
  • There There by Tommy Orange (urban Native Americans)
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