Benita Bunjun

Benita Bunjun, Associate Professor, Full-Time Faculty

Department of Social Justice and Community Studies
Women & Gender Studies
Saint Mary's University

923 Robie Street
Kjipuktuk, Halifax, Mi'kmaq Territory
Nova Scotia, B3H 3C3
Phone: 902-496-8161


Ph.D. University of British Columbia, Interdisciplinary Studies (2012)
PDF Simon Fraser University (2014)

Research Interests

  • Indigenous and Settler Relations
  • Feminist Organizational Studies; Social Movements
  • Race, Chattel Slavery, and Indenture Labour; Migration and Racialized Gendered Labour;
  • Racial Profiling and Violence; Colonial Gendered Encounters; Racialization and Feminization of Poverty
  • Mental Health, Labour and Nation-Building
  • Migration, Diaspora, and Youth; Academic Well-Being of Racialized Students

Research Projects 

  • The Presence of Racialized Mauritian Immigrant Health Care Workers at Riverview Hospital research examines the intersections of immigration, racialization of labour, mental health providers, psychiatric institutions/organizations and the nation-state. The research documents the historical presence and contributions of Mauritian nurses and health care workers at Riverview Hospital in British Columbia from 1960 to 2010.                                                                                                             
  • The Tenancy Rights of International Students (TRIS) Project investigates the tenancy experiences of international students in Halifax and Nova Scotia, Mi’kma’ki, through qualitative research data collection and critical race feminist analysis. With the TRIS Working Group, the research coordinates public education workshops and social media on tenancy rights and relevant resources including the website                                                                                                                    
  • The Academic Well-Being of Racialized Students Project investigates racialized students' adult education intersecting experiences of racial exclusion and disentitlement within Western academia. The project centres interdisciplinary critical Indigenous, race and feminist scholarship, community knowledge, and social justice work. In collaboration with The Centre for Race, Autobiography, Gender and Age (RAGA) on Coast Salish Territories and The Racialized Students Academic Network (RSAN) in Mi’kma’kithe project includes graduate, undergraduate, alumni, and faculty engagement through multiple level mentorship/peer support frameworks of reciprocity, scholarship and community relations resulting in the edited book Academic Well-Being of Racialized Students (Bunjun, 2022 – Fernwood Publishing -                                                                                                               
  • The Feminization & Racialization of Poverty Project is a multi-year project with the Vancouver Status of Women which engages in research, media relations, public education, lobbying, and evaluation. The project examines how State policies regarding Indigeneity, immigration, child apprehension, housing, and welfare disproportionately legislate poverty and social inequalities onto marginalized racialized communities.


Teaching Areas 

  • Qualitative Research Methods; Archival Research
  • Critical Race Studies; Critical Whiteness Studies
  • Race, Immigration and the State; Indigenous-Settler Relations
  • Social Power Relations; Canadian Society; Social Control and Regulation
  • Gender Relations; Introduction to Women's Studies; Intersectionality
  • Migration Labour, Social Movements; International and Community Organizing

Courses Currently Teaching

  • SJCS 1211: Social Power Relations
  • SJCS 4570: Indigenous-Settler Relations
  • SJCS 4810: SJCS Methods
  • WGST 6602: Feminist Methodologies

 Other Courses

  • SJCS 2100: Community Organizing 
  • SJCS 3218: Racialization & Social Control
  • SJCS 3608: Forms of Servitude
  • SJCS 4739 / WGST 6739: Transnational Community Organizing
  • SJCS 4740 / WGST 6740: Intersectionality: Theory, Methods and Praxis

Selected Publications

Bunjun, B. (2022). Interrogating white supremacy in academia: Creating alternative spaces for racialized students' scholarship and well-being. In Sunera Thobani (Ed.), Coloniality and Racial (In)Justice in the University: Counting for Nothing? Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Bunjun, B. (2021). Academic Well-Being of Racialized Students. Edited Volume. Halifax: Fernwood Publishing Co. 

Bunjun, B. (2021). Centering academic well-being of racialized students. In B. Bunjun (Ed.). Academic Well-Being of Racialized Students. Halifax: Fernwood Publishing Co.

Bunjun, B & Brown, Y. (2021). A way of being: The making of transnational kinship relations in institutions of higher learning. In B. Bunjun (Ed). Academic Well-Being of Racialized Students. Halifax: Fernwood Publishing Co.

Wei, M. L. & Bunjun, B. (2020). "We don't need another one in our group": Racism and Intervention on the Mental Health and well- Being of Racialized International Students in Business Schools. Journal Management Education- Special Issue on Mental Health and Psychological Well-Being Among Management Students and Educators.

Wei, M. L. & Bunjun, B. (2020). We are not the shoes of white supremacists: A critical race perspective of consumer responses to brand attempts at countering racist associations. Journal of Marketing Management—Special Issue on Marketing and Managing Racial Dynamics in Theory and Practice.

Bunjun, B. (2018). The making of a colonial archive: The Royal Commission on the Status of Women. Education for Change, 22(2), 1-24.

Bunjun, B. (2015). Organizational colonial encounters: A critical intersectional analysis of entitlement and nation-building. The International Journal of Organizational Diversity, 15(1), 1-15.

Bunjun, B. (2014). Diasporic entanglements and negotiations: Invoking subjectivities. In Roksana Badruddoja (Ed.), X Does Not Mark My Spot: Voices from the South Asian Diaspora (pp. 258-268). New Delhi: Zubaan.

Bunjun, B. (2014). The racialized feminist killjoy in white academia: Contesting white entitlement. In George Yancy and Maria Del Guadalupe Davidson (Eds.), Exploring Race in Predominantly White Classrooms: Scholars of Color Reflect (pp. 147-161). New York: Routledge. 

Bunjun, B. (2010). Feminist organizations and intersectionality: Contesting hegemonic feminism. Atlantis: Critical Studies in Gender, Culture, & Social Justice, 34(2), 115-126. 

Morris, M. & Bunjun, B. (2007). Using Intersectional Feminist Frameworks in Research: A Resource for Embracing the Complexities of Women's Lives. Ottawa: Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women.

Dr. Bunjun is the recipient of the following Teaching Excellence and Educational Leadership Awards ( 

  • SMU Father William A. Stewart, SJ Medal for Excellence in Teaching (2022): recognition for teaching excellence and service to students.
  • SMU Dr. Geraldine Thomas Educational Leadership Award (2022): recognition of long-term commitment of faculty who develop, enhance and promote quality of teaching and learning at Saint Mary’s University and beyond.
  • The SMUSA Award for Overall Excellence in the Field of Education (2020): presented to a member of Saint Mary’s Community who has undertaken initiatives and/or implemented practices with the sole intent of improving the quality of life and education for students both in and out of the classroom. This person displays selflessness and sincerity in dealing with students and has positively influenced one or many students’ academic careers.