Sandra Muse Isaacs

Faculty of Arts

Faculty Member Information


Siyo, Kwe, Skano, Boozhoo, and hello. I’m the new professor of Indigenous Literature at Saint Mary’s, after completing my PhD at McMaster in English and Cultural Studies. I am honored to now live and work on traditional Mi’kmaq territory (K’jipuktuk). I’m originally from Detroit, where I grew up with twelve siblings, and I’m of Tsalagi and Gaelic heritage. Previously, I taught Indigenous Literature at McMaster and Laurier-Brant, and journalism courses at UWO. My field of research is in Indigenous Literature and critical theory, Indigenous oral storytelling, Orality theory, Oral Histories, Creative Writing, and Post-Colonialism. I hope to work at examining the parallels between Indigenous oral traditions and their Earth-connected teachings which are becoming more pertinent with the changing global climate and recognition of the damage to the Earth caused by human practices of resource extraction – stealing the life-giving bloods of the Earth. I’m also interested in the interstices of Cherokee society and that of early Scottish settlers. My PhD dissertation documented and examined Eastern Cherokee Oral Tradition as both an ancient and contemporary literary form with emphasis on cultural survivance, nationhood, Indigenous resistance, and tribal sovereignty, along with its modern usage in land reclamation and cultural revitalization amongst a highly literate and technical Native American band in the southern Appalachian Mountains.