Susan Hyatt

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Invisible Indianapolis: Race, Heritage and Community Memory in the Circle City

Dr. Susan B. Hyatt has directed ethnographic research for a series of neighborhood-based studies on the eastside, near-Southside, and in the mid-north neighborhood of Mapleton-Fall Creek. The most prominent of these projects focused on the history of a multiethnic community on Indianapolis’ near southside that was largely erased in the 1970s by interstate highway construction.

Her current project, “Invisible Indianapolis,” undertaken jointly with Paul Mullins, will synthesize research that is currently scattered among several of Indianapolis’ neighborhoods to produce a single, coherent narrative of neighborhood connections and displacement. “Invisible Indianapolis” underscores the compelling stories of American life that remain unseen or misunderstood in our very midst; it is striving to develop public scholarship based on community interests; and it addresses how such histories can be reinvigorated to create new understandings of our past and shape a vision of our city’s collective future.

In 2010, the Indiana Campus Compact awarded Dr. Hyatt the Brian Hiltunen Award for the Outstanding Scholarship of Civic Engagement and in 2012 she received the Chancellor’s Faculty Award for Excellence in Civic Engagement. In 2016 she, along with her colleague Paul Mullins, were awarded the inaugural Charles R. Bantz Chancellor’s Community Fellowship for their project, “Invisible Indianapolis: Race, Heritage and Community Memory in the Circle City.”

Dr. Hyatt’s work to preserve the history of Indianapolis neighborhoods is another example of how IUPUI faculty are TRANSLATING RESEARCH INTO PRACTICE.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 10 of 11
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    Black Lives Matter and the Public Rediscovery of Structural Racism
    (2021) Hyatt, Susan B.; Anthropology, School of Liberal Arts
    Asset-Based Community Development promises to empower local communities while failing to address racialized disparities. We must look to broad-based social movements such as Black Lives Matter if we wish to create a genuinely more equitable and anti-racist world
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    Teaching Urban Anthropology in a Time of COVID
    (2021) Hyatt, Susan B.; Anthropology, School of Liberal Arts
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    Race and the Water: Swimming, Sewers, and Structural Violence in African America
    (University of New Mexico Press, 2020) Mullins, Paul R.; Huskins, Kyle; Hyatt, Susan B.; Anthropology, School of Liberal Arts
    Violence is rampant in today’s society. From state-sanctioned violence and the brutality of war and genocide to interpersonal fighting and the ways in which social lives are structured and symbolized by and through violence, people enact terrible things on other human beings almost every day. In Archaeologies of Violence and Privilege, archaeologists Christopher N. Matthews and Bradley D. Phillippi bring together a collection of authors who document the ways in which past social formations rested on violent acts and reproduced violent social and cultural structures. The contributors present a series of archaeological case studies that range from the mercury mines of colonial Huancavelica (AD 1564–1824) to the polluted waterways of Indianapolis, Indiana, at the turn of the twentieth century—a problem that disproportionally impacted African American neighborhoods. The individual chapters in this volume collectively argue that positions of power and privilege are fully dependent on forms of violence for their existence and sustenance.
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    Rediscovering the Neighborhood of Saturdays
    (2019-12) Hyatt, Susan B.; Anthropology, School of Liberal Arts
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    Using Campus Ethnography to Reveal Social Inequality
    (American Anthropological Association, 2019) Hyatt, Susan B.; Mullins, Paul R.; Anthropology, School of Liberal Arts
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    The neighborhood of Saturdays : memories of a multi-ethnic community on Indianapolis' south side
    (Dog Ear Publishing, 2012) Hyatt, Susan B.; Linder, Benjamin J.; Baurley, Margaret
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    Transformative Learning for Our Students When They Go Behind Prison Walls
    (Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, 2010-04-09) Jarjoura, Roger; Hyatt, Susan B.
    The Inside-Out Prison Exchange allows students and others outside of prison to go behind the walls to reconsider what they have learned about crime and justice, while those on the inside are encouraged to place their life experiences in a larger framework. In the groups’ discussions, countless life lessons and realizations surface about how we as human beings operate in the world, beyond the myths and stereotypes that imprison us all. The program demonstrates the potential for dynamic collaborations between institutions of higher learning and correctional institutions.
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    Research Partnerships: Undertaking and Understanding Collaborative Ethnography in Indianapolis
    (Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, 2010-04-09) Hyatt, Susan B.; Branstrator, Daniel; Baurley, Margaret; Dagon, Molly; Yarian, Stephanie
    Students will present a range of collaborative research projects they have undertaken in consultation with neighborhood and community-based organizations in Indianapolis. They will address the benefits, challenges and limitations that collaborative research has posed for them, as ethnographers-in-training
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    Walking the Walk in Collaborative Fieldwork: Responses to Menzies, Butler, and Their Students
    (University of Nebraska Press, 2011) Hyatt, Susan B.; Madariaga, Marcela Castro; Baurley, Margaret; Dagon, Molly J.; Logan, Ryan; Waxingmoon, Anne; Plasterer, David
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    (Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, 2012-04-13) Godanis, Stephen; Thang, Lian; Hyatt, Susan B.
    Downtown Indianapolis is witnessing a dramatic resurgence. For Indian-apolis, a chance to host the 2012 Super Bowl is not only an honor, but an opportunity to rebrand itself as a “big league city” with Midwestern charm. From the building of Lucas Oil Stadium, to the expansion of the existing con-vention center and the recently completed Georgia Street corridor, to subsi-dizing the building of a soaring hotel, Indianapolis has bent itself backwards to be ‘cool’ and ‘sporty.’ Few neighborhoods boast the development that has become common downtown. This dependency on sports as a means for eco-nomic development blurs the distinction between public and private space. For our research, we target the “mile-square” as ground-zero for analyzing and observing how a sport strategy has transformed the once called “India-no-place” to “Super City.” We collected a considerable amount of information through literature reviews, site visits, mapping (ArcGIS), field trips, and in-terviews. In this poster presentation, we study how the vernacular landscape of Indianapolis has changed due to the reliance on sports as an economic development strategy. We also discuss the role of public-private partner-ships in the making of downtown development as well as the development of districts to appeal to the new ‘creative’ class. We hope that our presentation will shed light on the complex relationship between recent events and down-town redevelopment.