Living with Ghosts
This chapter surveys some Western and Indigenous perspectives on haunting to consider how one might study ghosts. What is to be done about the presence of ghosts? Is haunting something that can or should be minimized or overcome, or is it a permanent condition? How can we distinguish between helpful and harmful ghosts? In this book such questions are focused on the two kinds of ghosts that are specific to Indigenous genomics: the ghosts of past racial science, and the haunting possibility of Indigenous biological difference. Are the ghosts of past efforts to define Indigenous biological difference a helpful presence? Or should we aim to exorcise them? Can an Indigenous-led genomics escape these ghosts? And are there better and worse ways to be haunted? The chapter considers existing approaches to ghostliness and argues for an alternative way of interacting with the ghosts of racial science: living with them.