Looking Back, Moving Forward: Food Sovereignty at UC Berkeley

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Professor Elizabeth Hoover and Jesús Nazario will discuss their research and experience working with Indigenous communities and food.

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This talk is the second in a series of conversations that will focus on the history and future of the Hearst Museum and UC Berkeley’s relationships with indigenous communities. Featuring speakers from within and beyond the campus, the series will center on ongoing projects leveraging UC’s institutional power, historically a source of harm, to further indigenous sovereignty and environmental justice.

Elizabeth Hoover is an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management. Her research focuses on Native American environmental health and food sovereignty movements. Her first book The River is In Us; Fighting Toxins in a Mohawk Community, (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) is an ethnographic exploration of Akwesasne Mohawks’ response to Superfund contamination and environmental health research. Her second book project From ‘Garden Warriors’ to ‘Good Seeds;’ Indigenizing the Local Food Movement (University of Minnesota Press, forthcoming) explores Native American farming and gardening projects around the country: the successes and challenges faced by these organizations, the ways in which participants define and envision concepts like food sovereignty, the importance of heritage seeds, the role of Native chefs in the food sovereignty movement, and convergences between the food sovereignty and anti-pipeline and anti-mining movements. She also co-edited, with Devon Mihesuah, Indigenous Food Sovereignty in the United States: Restoring Cultural Knowledge, Protecting Environments, and Regaining Health (University of Oklahoma Press, 2019). She has published articles about food sovereignty, environmental reproductive justice in Native American communities, the cultural impact of fish advisories on Native communities, tribal citizen science, and health social movements.

Jesús Nazario (jehj/jei, or any) is a second-year PhD student in Ethnic Studies studying Indigenous (Nahua) food and political sovereignty in the United States and Mexico. Jesús specifically has studied with small-holder Nahua maize farmers and is interested in linking seeds with people across settler-colonial borders. Jehj leads the BFI Graduate Council (BFIGC) and is also passionate about affordable housing in Berkeley, and cultivating Indigenous technologies.

This is an online event which will be hosted on Zoom. The link will be emailed to registered participants before the event.


Social Science Matrix

Townsend Center for the Humanities

Archaeological Research Facility

Department of Anthropology

Arts & Humanities


If you require an accommodation for effective communication (ASL interpreting/CART captioning, alternative media formats, etc.) to fully participate in this event, please contact Katie Fleming at with as much advance notice as possible and at least 7-10 days in advance of the event.

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Organizer Hearst Museum of Anthropology

Organizer of Looking Back, Moving Forward: Food Sovereignty at UC Berkeley


The Museum’s Gallery strives to provide excellence in accessibility for all visitors. The entrance and all exhibit spaces are wheelchair accessible and located on a single floor. Automatic door push-buttons are available at the front entrance. Content is provided at standard heights with all text in large, legible fonts and high contrast colors. A variety of furniture is provided throughout the Gallery to provide resting points for all guests including stools without backs, benches without backs, chairs with backs, and couches with backs. All exhibit cases and displays are cane detectable. Public restrooms are located near the Gallery through doors with a push bar, but no push button capability. Gender separated, multi-stall restrooms on the same floor as the Museum's Gallery have one ADA compliant accessible stall each. An all gender single occupancy restroom is located on the third floor of the Anthropology and Art Practice Building and is accessible by elevator or stairs. With advance notice, we are happy to provide additional support for guests with specific needs. Please email for more info.


We are a Museum of Anthropology for the 21st Century


We are anthropologists, educators and researchers, motivated by a passion for preserving stories today in order to make new connections tomorrow.

Founded in 1901, the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology is dedicated to the study of cultures from yesterday and today, both near and far. Today, the Museum contains an estimated 3.8 million objects from California and around the world, as well as extensive documents, photographs and film recordings. In this capacity we continue a legacy of enrichment and education, functioning as a research unit for the University of California, Berkeley supporting scholarly discovery and community-based research.


Located in the heart of the Berkeley campus, we have grown into a museum that studies the past and the present in order to encourage dialogue, understanding and respect. We facilitate connections by helping people relate to objects, cultures, and to one another. It would take years to explore everything in our care. With a collection containing millions of objects, we are constantly working to tell the stories of the cultures around us. Stories that demonstrate our shared humanity and the genuine connections that bring communities—from around the world—closer together.


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