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Stories of Our Living Ephemera

Storytelling Methodologies in the Archives of the Cherokee National Seminaries, 1846–1907

by Emily Legg

Hardcover Price $95.00
Paperback Price $35.95
Ebook Price $27.95
30-day ebook rental price $14.00

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“While her work is specific to Cherokee archives and communities, Legg’s larger argument is an invaluable contribution to the field of rhetoric and writing studies, especially in historical, cultural, and archival work.”
—Lisa King, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
“An essential contribution that makes a substantial impact on how research in rhetoric and composition is done going forward.”
—Sarah Klotz, College of the Holy Cross


Stories of Our Living Ephemera recovers the history of the Cherokee National Seminaries from scattered archives and colonized research practices by critically weaving together pedagogy and archival artifacts with Cherokee traditional stories and Indigenous worldviews. This unique text adds these voices to writing studies history and presents these stories as models of active rhetorical practices of assimilation resistance in colonized spaces.

Emily Legg turns to the Cherokee medicine wheel and cardinal directions as a Cherokee rhetorical discipline of knowledge making in the archives, an embodied and material practice that steers knowledge through the four cardinal directions around all relations. Going beyond historiography, Legg delineates educational practices that are intertwined with multiple strands of traditional Cherokee stories that privilege Indigenous and matriarchal theoretical lenses. Stories of Our Living Ephemera synthesizes the connections between contemporary and nineteenth-century academic experiences to articulate the ways that colonial institutions and research can be Indigenized by centering Native American sovereignty.

By undoing the erasure of Cherokee literacy and educational practices, Stories of Our Living Ephemera celebrates the importance of storytelling, especially to those who are learning about Indigenous histories and rhetorics. This book is of cultural importance and value to academics interested in composition and pedagogy, the Cherokee Nation, and a general audience seeking to learn about Indigenous rhetorical devices and Cherokee history.

The ebook edition will be made open access within three years of publication thanks to Path to Open, a program developed  to bring about equitable access and impact for the entire scholarly community, including authors, researchers, libraries, and university presses around the world. Learn more

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Emily Legg is a Cherokee Nation citizen and associate professor of composition and rhetoric at Miami University in Ohio. Her research centers Indigenous methodologies of storytelling as a decolonial and materialist research practice in writing and rhetoric, methodologies which she brings to her historiographic recovery work.

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  • Hardcover Price: $95.00
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-64642-520-4
  • Paperback Price: $35.95
  • Paperback ISBN: 978-1-64642-521-1
  • Ebook Price: $27.95
  • 30-day ebook rental price: $14.00
  • EISBN: 978-1-64642-522-8
  • Publication Month: December
  • Publication Year: 2023
  • Pages: 268
  • Illustrations: 16
  • Discount Type: Short
  • Author: by Emily Legg
  • ECommerce Code: 978-1-64642-521-1
  • Get Permissions: Get Permission

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