Daniel Justice

Daniel Heath Justice is a Colorado-born Canadian citizen of the Cherokee Nation. He received his B.A. from the University of Northern Colorado and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Before coming to UBC, he spent ten years as a faculty member in the Department of English at the University of Toronto, where he was also an affiliate of the Aboriginal Studies Program.

Daniel currently holds the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Literature and Expressive Culture. He is the author of Our Fire Survives the Storm: A Cherokee Literary History and numerous essays in the field of Indigenous literary studies, as well as co-editor of a number of critical and creative anthologies and journals, including the award-winning The Oxford Handbook of Indigenous American Literature (with James H. Cox) and Sovereign Erotics: A Collection of Two-Spirit Literature (with Qwo-Li Driskill, Deborah Miranda, and Lisa Tatonetti). He is also the author of Badger in the celebrated Animal series from Reaktion Books (UK) and the Indigenous epic fantasy novel, The Way of Thorn and Thunder: The Kynship Chronicles.

Daniel’s current projects include Why Indigenous Literatures Matter, a literary manifesto forthcoming from Wilfrid Laurier University Press, a collection of essays titled This Hummingbird Heart: Indigenous Writing, Wonder, and Desire, as well as a new dark fantasy trilogy, a cultural history of raccoons, and a critical monograph on other-than-human kinship in Indigenous writing.

Visit Daniel Justice’s website.

Photo by Melvin Yap, 2017.


On sabbatical as of July 1, 2017, and will return to teaching in 2018 Winter. 

Areas of research interest: Cherokee intellectual history; Indigenous literary expression, intellectual sovereignty, and critical theory; Indigenous expressive culture; representations of race and sexuality in the literatures of the fantastic; cultural history of animals

  • Daniel’s current scholarship focuses on the role of Indigenous writing, art, and performance in expressing, transforming, and creating meaningful kinship relationships, especially between Indigenous peoples and the other-than-human world.
  • Academic projects in development include: a short monograph on why Indigenous literatures matter, a cultural history of raccoons, a study of other-than-human kinship in Indigenous literature and arts, and a new Indigenous fantasy series.
Selected Publications


Critical Work: Books

  • Badger (Reaktion Books, 2015).
  • The Oxford Handbook of Indigenous American Literature, co-edited with James H. Cox (Oxford University Press, 2014).
  • Our Fire Survives the Storm: A Cherokee Literary History (University of Minnesota Press, 2006).


Critical Work: Essays

  • “Indigenous Writing,” The World of Indigenous North America, ed. Robert Warrior (Routledge, 2015).
  • “Indigenous Peoples’ Writing in Canada,” The Cambridge History of Postcolonial Literature, ed. Ato Quayson (Cambridge University Press, 2012).
  • “‘To Look upon Thousands’: Cherokee Transnationalism, at Home and Abroad,” in The New Centennial Review 10.1 (Spring 2010).
  • “Notes Toward a Theory of Anomaly,” GLQ 16.1-2 (2010).
  • “‘Go away water!’: Kinship Criticism and the Decolonization Imperative,” in Reasoning Together: The Native Critics Collective (University of Oklahoma Press, 2008).
  • “Renewing the Fire: Notes Toward the Liberation of English Studies,” in English Studies in Canada 29.1-2 (March/June 2003).
  • “We’re Not There Yet, Kemo Sabe: Positing a Future for American Indian Literary Studies” in American Indian Quarterly 25.2 (Spring 2001).


Creative Work

  • The Way of Thorn and Thunder: The Kynship Chronicles, revised omnibus edition of the Way of Thorn and Thunder trilogy (KynshipWyrwood, and Dreyd, all published by Kegedonce Press in Canada), University of New Mexico Press, 2011.