Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Policy Studies

First Advisor

Jennifer Esposito, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Deron Boyles, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Philo Hutcheson, Ph.D.

Fourth Advisor

Jodi Kaufmann, Ph.D.

Fifth Advisor

Joyce King, Ph.D.


For this study, I employed oral history collection and fiction writing to investigate the educational life history of Samenia Limes (1912-2000). While this life history features historical discussion of Georgetown, South Carolina and Harlem, New York – the areas in which Limes spent the better part of her life – the main focus of the study was on the ways Limes both learned and taught survival within a settler colonial context. Working from a Black-Indigenist paradigm, which privileges kinship/community and storytelling as sites of resistance to anti-Blackness, I conducted oral history interviews with Limes’ nine children. I then displayed the results in the form of a four-part novella. The results have been categorized as historical fiction, as fictional elements can fill in gaps left by transcripts and other historical documents, gaps that are part of a national history of Indigenous erasure and Black negation. The filling in of these gaps matters, as it represents an initial step in decolonizing practice, both in and outside of academia.