Dr. Holly Guise
Describe your research in about 200 words.
My research focuses on World War II Indigenous history, Alaska Native history, gendered segregation, and Unangan (Aleut) evacuation and internment. I bridge together archival research from federal, university, and tribal archives with elder oral histories related to wartime Alaska. I am particularly interested in analyzing gender during the war and the colonial/Indigenous relationship between the US military and Alaska Natives. My work involves constructing the social history of Alaska Natives during this time period. My research travels have taken me across Alaska to Utqiaġvik- the northernmost Iñupiat town in Alaska, southeast Alaska, Dutch Harbor in the Aleutian Islands, Fairbanks, and my family’s ancestral village of Unalakleet. As a side project, I’ve been working on a wartime Alaska website featuring elder oral histories with Alaskan WWII veterans, Unangan (Aleut) internment survivors, and Alaska Native elders who remember the war years. I have been working on launching a website related to wartime Alaska featuring elder oral histories and maps with relevant wartime sites. Broadly, I situate my work within the fields of race & ethnicity, gender history, Pacific history, the American West, and new Indian history.
What’s the most interesting thing you have learned from a student?
One student had a grandpa who was active in the American Indian Movement of the late 1960s. One day in class, this student brought their grandfather’s AIM headband to show everyone.