ERIC Number: ED401082
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
Why I Can't Read Wallace Stegner and Other Essays: A Tribal Voice.
In this collection of essays, a Native American feminist intellectual, poet, and literary scholar grapples with issues she encountered as a Native American in academia. The essays examine and criticize the enormous impact of America's media culture and ask questions about who is telling Native peoples' stories, where cultural authority lies, and how to develop an authentic tribal literary voice within the academic community. Part 1 discusses the emergence of the Native voice in critical scholarship and maintains that ignoring or falsifying the ethical relationship between tribal nationhood and the imagination results in flawed scholarship. This section includes reviews of the books "Wounded Knee, 1973: A Personal Account" (Stanley David Lyman); "The Broken Cord" (Michael Dorris);"Black Eagle Child: The Facepaint Narratives" (Ray A. Young Bear); and "Black Hills, White Justice" (Edward Lazarus). Part 2 ("Why I Can't Read Wallace Stegner" and "A Centennial Minute from Indian Country; or Lessons in Christianizing the Aboriginal Peoples of America from the Example of Bishop William Hobart Hare") outlines patterns of injustice stemming from the tribal imagination silenced or overwhelmed by Western writers for whom Stegner is an icon, or by the oppressive Christian religion of colonizers of Sioux country. Part 3 ("The Relationship of a Writer to the Past: Art, a Literary Principle, and the Need To Narrate" and "The American Indian Fiction Writers: Cosmopolitanism, Nationalism, the Third World, and First Nation Sovereignty") illustrates how tribal models of literary criticism have emerged as major vehicles of tribal intellectual empowerment, and condemns the cosmopolitanism in contemporary fiction while arguing for decolonization through third-world nationalism. Part 4 ("The American Indian Woman in the Ivory Tower" and "The Big Pipe Case") examines moral questions facing Indian women who are professionals and scholars at universities, and discusses a case in which a teenage alcoholic Indian mother was sentenced to 4 years in prison for child abuse. Part 5 ("How Scholarship Comes To Be Relevant, or Dumbarton Oaks Is Fifty Years Old"; "America's Oldest Racism: The Roots of Inequality"; and "End of the Failed Metaphor") comments on America's racism, the disastrous dismissal of indigenous mythology, and the failure of metaphor in the modern world, and challenges readers to understand how important it is for indigenous peoples to honor the past as they participate in the future. Contains a selected bibliography. (SV)
Descriptors: American Indian History, American Indian Literature, American Indian Studies, American Indians, Child Welfare, Cultural Images, Empowerment, Essays, Feminism, Higher Education, Intellectual Freedom, Literary Criticism, Mass Media Effects, Metaphors, Racial Discrimination, Scholarship, Tribal Sovereignty, Women Faculty
Univ. of Wisconsin Press, 114 N. Murray St., Madison, WI 53715-1199 (cloth: ISBN-0-299-15140-9, $45; paper: ISBN-0-299-15144-1, $17.95); fax: 800-265-6768.
Publication Type: Books; Creative Works; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A