About Prof. Davis
Jenny L. Davis is a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation and an Associate Professor of Anthropology and American Indian Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, where she is the director of the American Indian Studies Program and co-director of the Center for Indigenous Science. She is the co-editor of the Studies in Language and Gender series at Oxford University Press.
Prof. Davis’s research interests sit at the intersections of Indigenous language futurism (including language reclamation & revitalization); Queer Indigenous Studies; Speculative fiction and poetry; NAGPRA & repatriation; and collaborative/community-based methods. Her research has been published in the Annual Review of Anthropology, American Anthropologist, Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, Gender & Language, Language & Communication, Collections: A Journal for Museum and Archives Professionals, the American Journal of Biological Anthropology, and the Review of International American Studies (RIAS), among others. She is the recipient of two book prizes: the 2019 Beatrice Medicine Award from the Association for the Study of American Indian Literatures for Talking Indian: Identity and Language Revitalization in the Chickasaw Renaissance (University of Arizona Press, 2018) and the 2014 Ruth Benedict Book Prize from the Association for Queer Anthropology and the American Anthropological Association for her co-edited volume Queer Excursions: Retheorizing Binaries in Language, Gender, and Sexuality (Oxford University Press, 2014).
Prof. Davis’s 2022 poetry manuscript, Trickster Academy, was published in the University of Arizona Press Sun Tracks Series, and her creative work has most recently been published in Transmotion; Anomaly; Santa Ana River Review; Broadsided; North Dakota Quarterly; Yellow Medicine Review; As/Us; Raven Chronicles; and Resist Much/Obey Little: Inaugural Poems to the Resistance and exhibited at the Ziibiwing Center of Anishinabe Culture & Lifeways and the Minnesota Center for Book Arts.
From 2019-2022, Prof. Davis served as the Chancellor’s Fellow of Indigenous Research & Ethics. In that role, she worked to develop initiatives, including a campus-wide NAGPRA office and Tribal Liaison postion, to ensure that the University is knowledgeable about and in compliance with U.S. and tribal government policies and protocols through collaborating with faculty, the NAGPRA Officer, campus and tribal leaders, and advising the Chancellor and Vice Chancellors on issue involving ethical research of Indigenous people, histories, and cultures. She currently serves as the co-chair of the campus NAGPRA Advisory Committee.