Caitlin Keliiaa F'18

Caitlin  Keliiaa
Postdoctoral Fellow
University of California, Santa Cruz

Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships 2018
Doctoral Candidate
Ethnic Studies
University of California, Berkeley
Unsettling Domesticity: Native Women and US Indian Policy in the San Francisco Bay Area

From 1918 to about 1942, the Bay Area Outing Program (BAOP) coercively recruited thousands of Native women from US Indian boarding schools to work as live-in housemaids. Though largely unknown, these labor programs were integral to the Indian assimilation project. This historical project situates the BAOP within a long history of Indian servitude in California and unpacks a thriving exploitative labor market. Significantly, this project places Native women’s experiences, agency, and resistance at the center of its analysis. It traces gendered Indian labor and the history of this unique, city-based program, and examines Native women’s forms of resistance, such as running away and fighting for wages. This project addresses how this outing program compares to other colonial labor practices, the ways in which Native women overtly and covertly subvert domestic service assimilation and labor exploitation, and the modern implications of the BAOP. “Unsettling Domesticity” deepens the outing story.