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Area of Expertise: Academia

"Only through small stories do I ever find my way to the big picture of women's lives...Women's efforts to hold things together merged tradition and innovation allowing families and future generations to maintain communities in their homelands. A force greater than treaties that bind us to our homelands. "

Brenda J. Child is Northrop Professor and Chair of the Department of American Studies at the University of Minnesota, and former Chair of the Department of American Indian Studies. She is the author of several books in American Indian history including Boarding School Seasons: American Indian Families, 1900-1940 (1998), which won the North American Indian Prose Award; Holding Our World Together: Ojibwe Women and the Survival of Community (2012); Indian Subjects: Hemispheric Perspectives on the History of Indigenous Education (with Brian Klopotek, 2014). Her 2014 book My Grandfather’s Knocking Sticks: Ojibwe Family Life and Labor on the Reservation won the American Indian Book Award and the Best Book in Midwestern History Award. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the National Museum of the American Indian- Smithsonian and past-president of the Native American & Indigenous Studies Association. Child was born on the Red Lake Ojibwe Reservation in northern Minnesota where she is a member of a committee writing a new constitution for the 12,000 member Nation.