UO Global Justice Work

Unceded Kinship: Land Place & People

Unceded Kinship seeks to engage students and the UO community in honoring the past, present, and future of Native and Afro descendent peoples. The project explores how we can restore our relationships to one another and to the natural world while holding kinship, solidarity, and community as sacred. As a Global Justice Grant project, refusing the narratives of erasure, dehumanization, and subjugation, and envisioning a future rooted in Black Liberation and Indigenous Sovereignty are the drives behind the Unceded Kinship initiative. Unceded Kinship is guided and organized by UO alum Amber Starks, enrolled citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation and of Shawnee, Yuchi, Quapaw, and Cherokee descent. Amber is a nationally-recognized community organizer, artist, and stylist.The project intersects with UO Common Reading's selection—Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer.


Unceded Kinship Small

The initiative is funded as part of the Global Justice Program (GJP) grant approved for UO Common Reading. Funding for the grant is provided through the UO Savage Endowment for International Relations and Peace. 


Read About Amber and Unceded Kinship in Around the O!

Around the O Amber Article


Interested in Unceded Kinship and the Global Justice Grant work? Here are some other resources and projects to check out!

Air Water Land
This symposium featured Amber Starks as a speaker, focusing on environmental justice and sustainable food systems. Designed to foster critical conversations from Indigenous and Black/Afro-descendant communities across the Americas, this event is organized around themes of air, land, and water, with a committed focus to issues impacting local communities.
Strides for Social Justice
A PeaceHealth initiative developed in partnership with the Eugene Marathon – is designed to be a free, inclusive program that will engage and educate participants on the contributions, achievements and milestones of Black residents of Lane County, highlighting the injustices many have faced. Together we can stop the cycle of racism, building a more inclusive culture in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
Common Seeing
Every year, the University of Oregon’s Common Reading program encourages campus-wide engagement with a shared book and related resources. JSMA’s corresponding Common Seeing expands this conversation through the visual arts. This year’s Common Seeing brings together works by nine contemporary Native artists that speak to these issues and each’s experiences as individuals and members of their communities. 

Indigenous UO Map

This map highlights the key points of interests related to Native American and Indigenous history on campus. This project was created and developed by the Native American and Indigenous Studies Academic Residential Community in 2018.

If you have any questions, are interested in getting involved with Unceded Kinship, or want to give feedback on the project: 

The Unceded Kinship team would love to hear from you!

Please send us an email at commonreading@uoregon.edu