Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) Conference 2018

Thursday, May 17, 2018 - Saturday, May 19, 2018

From May 17-19, 2018, the American Indian Studies Center at University of California, Los Angeles and its Southern California co-hosts will welcome NAISA, the largest scholarly organization devoted to Indigenous issues and research, to Yaanga (Downtown Los Angeles) on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Tongva.

Los Angeles is home to the largest Indigenous populations in the US. It is our aim to highlight the incredibly rich landscape of Indigenous Los Angeles at NAISA 2018. Our meeting will be set in downtown on what used to be the village of Yaanga before Tongva dispossession. As the city grew, so did Indigenous populations in Los Angeles. Many American Indians, Latin American Indigenous peoples, Alaskan Natives, and Native Hawaiians have come to the rich land of the Gabrieliño/Tongva for a variety of reasons, whether it was from following the rich trade of sea otters, fishing or whaling, or being driven from their homes by the economic tyranny of federal Indian policy, or fleeing persecution of the Mexican government against Indigenous peoples. Many from the Pacific and Global South would follow and make Los Angeles their home. To learn more about the history of Tongva land and how these communities have made their home in LA, we invite you to visit Mapping Indigenous LA’s website where you will find storymaps and more information:

Extending out from LA and into the Southern California region, we find 19 federally recognized tribes and hundreds more who are not yet recognized. We will provide more information about the amazing community sites for you to visit. Also, there is a plethora of culturally rich museums that hold important archives of Indigenous knowledge as well as contemporary work.

Today we meet as communities to learn from each other, devise anti-colonial strategies and ignite conversations about a decolonial future. We hope that you will join us for this exciting conference!

For questions or inquiries, please contact us at

NAISA strives to make its annual meeting a safe space for all attendees. We expect everyone in attendance, whether as a NAISA member, guest, vendor, or otherwise to behave in a professional manner. We also expect everyone to abide by all local, state/provincial, and national laws. NAISA maintains a zero-tolerance policy regarding sexual or other harassment. The NAISA council reserves the absolute right, in its sole discretion, to bar anyone from attendance at the annual meeting.


For more information, visit:

This conference is sponsored by: 

  • UCLA
    • American Indian Studies Center
    • Asian American Studies Center
    • Asian American Studies Department
    • Chicano Studies Research Center
    • Dean of Social Sciences
    • Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
    • Gender Studies
    • Institute for Research on Labor and Employment
    • Institute of American Cultures
    • Luskin School of Public Affairs
    • Penny Kanner Chair
  • CSU Long Beach
  • UCI
    • Department of Comparative Literature
  • UCSD
    • Literature Department
  • UCR
  • USC
  • CSU Fullerton
  • CSU San Diego
  • CSU Northridge
  • Claremont Colleges
  • Palomar
  • Occidental
  • Autry
  • United American Indian Involvement