Ethnicity Studies · graduate school · Native American Studies

The Irony of “Preservation”

I have little to say, so far. I’ve just started reading Cogewea: The Half-Blood by Mourning Dove (Hum-Ishu-Ma). The introduction discusses her relationship with Lucullus V. McWhorter, a “pioneer of encyclopedic interests.”  McWhorter encouraged Mourning Dove in her efforts as a writer, and she became the first recognized American Indian woman to write a novel. McWhorter, however,…… Continue reading The Irony of “Preservation”

Ethnicity Studies · graduate school · Native American Studies · personal · Writing

The problem with “real”

I’m becoming irritated with the over-usage of the adjective “real.” It gets attached to so many things. “Real men express their feelings.” “Real women have curves.” “Real adults take responsibility for their actions.” So, men who can’t express themselves aren’t real? Thin women aren’t real? Irresponsible adults aren’t real? What does that mean? Because these…… Continue reading The problem with “real”

Ethnicity Studies · Native American Studies · Writing

The Violence of Language

In the fifth chapter of Gloria Anzaldúa’s Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza she features, among others, this epigraph: Who is to say that robbing a people of its language is less violent than war? — Ray Gywn Smith In light of my last post, and Zitkala-Ša’s definition of language as a convenience, Anzaldúa’s words offer quite a…… Continue reading The Violence of Language

Ethnicity Studies · Native American Studies

“Language is only a convenience”: Zitkala-Ša and Empowerment Rhetoric

Zitkala-Ša, a staunch advocate for the rights of Native Americans in the 19th and early 20th Centuries, said,We sometimes think we cannot speak the English language well and we cannot talk in the conference. That is not it. You can tell us what is in your heart. Use the words that are put in  your…… Continue reading “Language is only a convenience”: Zitkala-Ša and Empowerment Rhetoric