Colloquium: Wendy M. K. Peters (Sofia University)


Title: Understanding Intergenerational Trauma

Location: UTA 5.522 (1616 Guadalupe St., 5th Floor)


The considerable bio-psycho-social disparities that have all but become the norm for many Native populations in the U.S. (Sarche & Spicer, 2008) and Canada (Adelson, 2005) are now understood as an interrelated complex of conditions that has its origins in the usurpation of sovereignty and imposed colonization. Intergenerational Trauma (IT), used interchangeably with the term Historical Trauma (HT) hereafter, is a phenomenon that has been evidenced in the descendants of groups with historical experience of mass trauma and victimization under conditions of conquest (Brave Heart-Jordan, 1996). Despite only recently being recognized and acknowledged by Western science, Historical Trauma is a condition that has long been characterized by indigenous elders as a Soul Wound, suggesting the condition as being deeper and more pervasive than a mortal wound (Duran, 2006). In fact, social science characterizes IT/HT using such terminology as memetics, otherwise understood as cultural items passed down and across generations as ecologies of the mind (Beck and Cowan, 1996; Dawkins, 1982). Similarly, the term applied by biological science is epigenetics, which refers to developmental and intergenerational influences on genetic structure and how it is expressed through human biology (Harper 2005, Kuzawa, 2008). Peters research explores the lived experience of Native peoples who have different histories, but identify as being from populations that are known for exemplifying characteristics of IT/HT. In her presentation, Peters briefly describes the history of IT/HT, its current day manifestations throughout Indian Country, and the future implications for Native populations (Peters 2011). Peters will also discuss best practices in relation to Indigenous and Indigenist research methods (Armour, Rivaux, & Bell, 2009; Cardinal, 2001; Evans, 2006; Getty, 2009; Grenier, 1998; Holmes, 2000, Wilson, 2007).


Wendy Peters, PhD, is Native Hawaiian and currently resides in Dayton, Ohio. She is an adjunct teaching faculty for both Antioch University and Sofia University and has an interdisciplinary background in psychology, business, and technology. Peters is a Health and Community Psychologist whose work is deeply rooted in service to American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and other cultural communities. She completed her post-doctoral fellowship at the Seven Generations Center of Excellence in Native Behavioral Health at the University of North Dakota and has effectively worked to influence public policy regarding Native peoples. Peters has authored numerous publications including such titles as The embodied library: The culmination of all who came before (IFLA, 2016); Psychological assessment considerations for American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians (APA Press, 2015), We are Humans Being: Naming, Identity, and Overcoming the Soul Wound Phenomenon (ABC-CLIO, 2015), Psychological practice with Native women (APA Press, 2014), Native American medicine: The implications of history and the embodiment of culture and Indigenous women and wisdom: An eternal chain of being (ABC-CLIO, 2014), and The Indigenous soul wounding: Understanding culture, memetics, complexity and emergence (Sage, 2012).



1:15pm to 2:30pm


glqxz9283 sfy39587stf02 mnesdcuix8