Maddie Knickerbocker

BA (SFU), MMSt (U of T), PhD (SFU)
A photo of Dr Maddie Knickerbocker
Surrey Office: Main 2850F

Maddie is a white settler of English, Dutch, German, Irish, and Scottish heritage who is part of the seventh generation of her family to live on Turtle Island, and the fourth to live on unceded, untreatied Coast Salish territories. 

She took a roundabout meander through various Arts disciplines to get to her PhD in History, and this interdisciplinarity is still a hallmark of her work today. In her teaching and research, she engages with the fields of History, Indigenous Studies, and Museum Studies, and she uses oral history, digital humanities, and community engaged methods.

For her PhD (SFU, 2018), Maddie worked with Stó:lō people and organizations to explore Stó:lō cultural heritage and sovereignty. Her dissertation examined how 20th century Stó:lō political efforts to protect their territories were entangled with work to preserve Stó:lō cultural heritage. She also analyzed the gendered nature of those activist struggles, as well as the competitions between Stó:lō and settler sovereignties. She is currently writing a manuscript based on the dissertation, to be published by UBC Press, and maintains strong connections with Stó:lō research partners and community members.

When she’s not working, Maddie enjoys curling up with a novel and cup of tea, going for good long walks, playing tabletop role-playing games like Dungeons & Dragons, baking, swimming, and watching truly cringe-worthy reality TV.

Areas of Interest

Indigenous histories in Canada (and especially British Columbia), settler colonialism and Indigenous sovereignty, histories of gender and sexuality, cultural heritage, historical methods 


Scholarly Work

  • “Making Matriarchs at Coqualeetza: Stó:lō Women’s Politics and Histories across Generations,” in Intergenerational Indigenous Feminisms, edited by Sarah Nickel and Amanda Fehr, 25-47 (Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 2020).
  • “Cedar, Seagrass and Soapstone: Redefining the Teacup in Colonial Canada,” with Lisa Truong, in The Inbetweenness of Things, edited by Paul Basu, 211-230 (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2017).
  • “Negotiating Sovereignty: Indigenous Perspectives on a Settler-Colonial Constitution, 1970-1983,” with Sarah Nickel, BC Studies 190 (summer 2016): 67-87.
  • “’namała, Su Na chii k’chige, ʔems taʔaw: Indigenous-Academic Collaborative Histories.” Histoire Social/Social History 48, no. 96 (May 2015): 294-302.
  • “‘What We’ve Said Can be Proven in the Ground’: Stó:lō Sovereignty and Historical Narratives at Xá:ytem, 1990-2006,” Journal of the Canadian Historical Association 24, no. 1 (2014): 297-342.