Diane Obed (she/her)

Nominated by member scholarly associations of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, the 2022 Congress Graduate Merit Awards recognize exceptional graduate students who will be presenting their work at the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences. 

Tell us about yourself. 

As an Inuk PhD student in Educational Foundations at MSVU in Kjipuktuk, Halifax, I have been on a decolonizing journey for nearly two decades. My work focuses on reclaiming Indigenous worldviews and practices to heal from colonial trauma. This journey has led me to research Indigenous land and contemplative education.  

At which conference(s) will you be presenting and/or attending? 

Society for the Study of Higher Education 

What is the title of your Congress 2022 presentation?  

Synergies between Indigenous ways of knowing and meditative inquiry 

How would you describe the research you will be presenting at Congress 2022?

I will be offering reflections from the journey toward decolonization and learning from fellow humans – Inuit and Indigenous peoples – and more-than-human beings, such as the lands, skies, waters, sentient beings. Indigenous approaches to learning from nature and culture synergize naturally with the contemplative focus of meditative inquiry.  

At a time when mainstream education seeks to diversify and include global and local forms of knowledge, each of these approaches offer holistic and intuitive knowledges and practices for deeper, meaningful self-engagement. Diane trusts that a deepened and meditative engagement offers conditions conducive to self-inquiry and promotes an enhanced human capacity for greater attunement to ourselves, one another, and the earth. 

How does the research you will be presenting connect with the Congress 2022 theme, Transitions

My research and knowledge relating to both Indigenous and Eastern approaches to gathering knowledge are each similarly yet distinctively, attuned to an orientation that emphasizes impermanence, flux, and continuous change in both human and non-human worlds. Each of these approaches would rather ask, when are we, as a society and a planet, really not in transition? They each offer wisdom for us to find ground and stability especially during transitionary times. 

Share your hopes for Congress 2022.

My hopes are to connect and learn from other scholars, especially Indigenous scholars in the field of decolonizing education. I hope to be able to provide a space for scholars to critically think about how different forms of sharing and receiving knowledges are welcomed and encouraged in academia and in the field of education more broadly.